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PLoS One. 2015 Nov 3;10(11):e0141974. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0141974. eCollection 2015.

Direct Comparison of a Natural Loss-Of-Function Single Nucleotide Polymorphism with a Targeted Deletion in the Ncf1 Gene Reveals Different Phenotypes.

Author information

1
Medicity Research Laboratory, University of Turku, Turku, Finland.
2
Medicity Research Laboratory, University of Turku, Turku, Finland; The National Doctoral Programme in Informational and Structural Biology, Turku, Finland.
3
Medicity Research Laboratory, University of Turku, Turku, Finland; Department of Physiology, Institute of Biomedicine, and Turku Center for Disease Modeling, University of Turku, Turku, Finland.
4
Department of Physiology, Institute of Biomedicine, and Turku Center for Disease Modeling, University of Turku, Turku, Finland.
5
Medicity Research Laboratory, University of Turku, Turku, Finland; Medical Inflammation Research, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.

Abstract

The genetic targeting of mouse models has given insight into complex processes. However, phenotypes of genetically targeted mice are susceptible to artifacts due to gene manipulation, which may lead to misinterpretation of the observations. To directly address these issues, we have compared the immunological phenotypes of Ncf1 knockout mice with Ncf1m1J mice possessing a naturally occurring intronic loss-of-function SNP in their Ncf1 gene. Neutrophil cytosolic factor 1 (NCF1) is the key regulatory component of the phagocytic NADPH oxidase 2 (NOX2) complex. Defects in NCF1 lead to lower production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) associated with autoimmune diseases in humans. In mice, collagen induced arthritis (CIA) and psoriatic arthritis are autoimmune disorders known to be regulated by Ncf1, and they were utilized in the present study to compare the Ncf1 knockout with Ncf1m1J mice. Targeted Ncf1 knockout mice were generated on a pure C57BL/6N genetic background, and thereafter crossed with B10.Q.Ncf1m1J mice. The targeting silenced the Ncf1 gene as intended, and both the B6N;B10.Q.Ncf1m1J mice as well as the knockout littermates had reduced ROS production compared to wild type mice. Both also exhibited enhanced STAT1 (signal transducer and activator of transcription 1) protein expression as an indicator of pronounced interferon signature reported recently for Ncf1 deficient mice. Surprisingly, female Ncf1 knockout mice were protected from CIA whereas the Ncf1m1J females developed severe disease. Ovariectomization retrieved the susceptibility of Ncf1 knockout females pointing to a sex hormone regulated protection against CIA in these mice. The data partly explains the discrepancy of the phenotypes reported earlier utilizing the Ncf1m1J mice or Ncf1 knockout mice. These observations indicate that even a targeted knockout mutation may lead to a different biological outcome in comparison to the natural loss-of-function mutation of the same gene.

PMID:
26528554
PMCID:
PMC4631371
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0141974
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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