We describe an experimental approach for generating mutant alleles in rat spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) using Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon-mediated insertional mutagenesis. The protocol is based on mobilization of mutagenic gene-trap transposons from transfected plasmid vectors into the genomes of cultured stem cells. Cells with transposon insertions in expressed genes are selected on the basis of activation of an antibiotic-resistance gene encoded by the transposon. These gene-trap clones are transplanted into the testes of recipient males (either as monoclonal or polyclonal libraries); crossing of these founders with wild-type females allows the insertions to be passed to F 1 progeny. This simple, economic and user-friendly methodological pipeline enables screens for functional gene annotation in the rat, with applicability in other vertebrate models where germ line-competent stem cells have been established. The complete protocol from transfection of SSCs to the genotyping of heterozygous F 1 offspring that harbor genomic SB gene-trap insertions takes 5-6 months.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)