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A robust and high-throughput Cre reporting and characterization system for the whole mouse brain.

Nature neuroscience | Jan 24, 2010

The Cre/lox system is widely used in mice to achieve cell-type-specific gene expression. However, a strong and universally responding system to express genes under Cre control is still lacking. We have generated a set of Cre reporter mice with strong, ubiquitous expression of fluorescent proteins of different spectra. The robust native fluorescence of these reporters enables direct visualization of fine dendritic structures and axonal projections of the labeled neurons, which is useful in mapping neuronal circuitry, imaging and tracking specific cell populations in vivo. Using these reporters and a high-throughput in situ hybridization platform, we are systematically profiling Cre-directed gene expression throughout the mouse brain in several Cre-driver lines, including new Cre lines targeting different cell types in the cortex. Our expression data are displayed in a public online database to help researchers assess the utility of various Cre-driver lines for cell-type-specific genetic manipulation.

Pubmed ID: 20023653 RIS Download

Mesh terms: Animals | Bacterial Proteins | Brain | Dendrites | Gene Transfer Techniques | Integrases | Luminescent Proteins | Mice | Mice, Inbred C57BL | Mice, Transgenic | Microscopy, Confocal | Neurons | Promoter Regions, Genetic | Recombination, Genetic | Regulatory Sequences, Nucleic Acid | Tamoxifen | Tissue Distribution | Viral Proteins

Research resources used in this publication

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Associated grants

  • Agency: NIMH NIH HHS, Id: R01 MH085500
  • Agency: NIMH NIH HHS, Id: R01 MH085500-01
  • Agency: NIMH NIH HHS, Id: MH085500

Expression Atlas of the Marmoset (Data, Gene Annotation)

Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI) (Data, Gene Annotation)

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Allen Mouse Brain Atlas

Project for 3D genome map of gene expression in the adult mouse brain. Reveals the expression patterns of genes throughout entire adult mouse brain down to cellular level. Interactive, genome wide image database of gene expression with ISH and Nissl images. Combination of RNA in situ hybridization data, detailed Reference Atlases and informatics analysis tools are integrated to provide searchable digital atlas of gene expression.

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Allen Institute for Brain Science Transgenic Mouse Study

A comprehensive characterization of expression patterns of genetically-controlled markers or tool genes in the brains of transgenic mice generated by the Allen Institute as well as the broad scientific community. Providing standardized, detailed, anatomical profiling of transgene expression throughout the brain, this dataset is intended to reveal the potential of each transgenic mouse line and help researchers choose the appropriate tools for their studies. Transgenic mice are valuable tools to label selective neuronal or non-neuronal populations, modulate gene expression in these cells or manipulate activity of these cells for the study of neural circuits and brain function. The Allen Institute has launched a project to generate a variety of transgenic mouse lines, mainly using the Cre/lox system, to express fluorescent probes or neuronal activity manipulating tools in a variety of cell types in the brain. At the same time, utilizing Allen Institute's unique high-throughput capability, a pipeline is set up to characterize the ability in directing cell type specific expression in the brains of various transgenic mice generated by the Allen Institute as well as the broad scientific community. Through standardized, detailed, anatomical profiling of the transgene expression in the entire mouse brain, this dataset is intended to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the potential of each transgenic mouse line and help researchers choose the appropriate transgenic tools to study the function of different regions and/or cell types of the brain. This data release adds additional data to the existing set of new Cre-reporter lines generated at the Allen Institute that have stronger expression than other commonly used reporter lines are used to characterize approximately a dozen Cre-driver lines. The types of characterization data include digitized images (of sections sampling the entire brain) of colorimetric in situ hybridization (CISH), double fluorescent in situ hybridization (DFISH), native fluorescence of XFP (generic term for fluorescent proteins of different colors), and immunohistochemical (IHC) labeling of marker genes.

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Harvard Gene Therapy Initiative Core

Core facility that provides the following services: MLV plasmid construction service, HIV plasmid construction service, Adenovirus plasmid construction service. The Harvard Gene Therapy Initiative was founded with the objective of promoting the use of gene therapy in both research and therapeutic applications and to conduct research developing new gene delivery vector technologies.

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