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Mol Cell Biochem. 1994 Apr-May;133-134:263-74.

Approaching the multifaceted nature of energy metabolism: inactivation of the cytosolic creatine kinases via homologous recombination in mouse embryonic stem cells.

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Department of Cell Biology and Histology, University Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


To study the physiological role of the creatine kinase/phosphocreatine (CK/PCr) system in cells and tissues with a high and fluctuating energy demand we have concentrated on the site-directed inactivation of the B- and M-CK genes encoding the cytosolic CK protein subunits. In our approach we used homologous recombination in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells from strain 129/Sv. Using targeting constructs based on strain 129/Sv isogenic DNA we managed to ablate the essential exons of the B-CK and M-CK genes at reasonably high frequencies. ES clones with fully disrupted B-CK and two types of M-CK gene mutations, a null (M-CK-) and leaky (M-CK1) mutation, were used to generate chimaeric mutant mice via injection in strain C57BL/6 derived blastocysts. Chimaeras with the B-CK null mutation have no overt abnormalities but failed to transmit the mutation to their offspring. For the M-CK- and M-CK1 mutations successful transmission was achieved and heterozygous and homozygous mutant mice were bred. Animals deficient in MM-CK are phenotypically normal but lack muscular burst activity. Fluxes through the CK reaction in skeletal muscle are highly impaired and fast fibres show adaptation in cellular architecture and storage of glycogen. Mice homozygous for the leaky M-CK allele, which have 3-fold reduced MM-CK activity, show normal fast fibres but CK fluxes and burst activity are still not restored to wildtype levels.

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