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BMB Rep. 2012 Dec;45(12):686-92.

Mouse genetics: catalogue and scissors.

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Department of Biochemistry, College of Life Science and Biotechnology, Laboratory Animal Research Center, Yonsei University, Seoul 120-749, Korea.


Phenotypic analysis of gene-specific knockout (KO) mice has revolutionized our understanding of in vivo gene functions. As the use of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells is inevitable for conventional gene targeting, the generation of knockout mice remains a very time-consuming and expensive process. To accelerate the large-scale production and phenotype analyses of KO mice, international efforts have organized global consortia such as the International Knockout Mouse Consortium (IKMC) and International Mouse Phenotype Consortium (IMPC), and they are persistently expanding the KO mouse catalogue that is publicly available for the researches studying specific genes of interests in vivo. However, new technologies, adopting zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs) or Transcription Activator-Like Effector (TALE) Nucleases (TALENs) to edit the mouse genome, are now emerging as valuable and effective shortcuts alternative for the conventional gene targeting using ES cells. Here, we introduce the recent achievement of IKMC, and evaluate the significance of ZFN/TALEN technology in mouse genetics.

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