Extrachromosomal Transposition of the Transposable Element Minos in Embryos of the Cricket Gryllus Bimaculatus

Dev Growth Differ. 2002 Oct;44(5):409-17. doi: 10.1046/j.1440-169x.2002.00654.x.


Effective germline transformation of insects has been shown to depend on the right choice of transposon system and selection marker. In this study the promoter region of a Gryllus cytoplasmic actin (GbA3/4) gene was isolated and characterized, and was used to drive the expression of Minos transposase in embryos of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus. Active Minos transposase was produced in these embryos as monitored through established transposon excision and interplasmid transposition assays. In contrast, Drosophila melanogaster hsp70 promoter, previously used to express Minos transposase in a number of insect species and insect cell lines, failed to produce any detectable Minos transposase activity, as recorded by using the very sensitive transposon excision assay. In addition, the GbA3/4 promoter was found to drive expression of enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) predominantly in vitellophages of the developing Gryllus eggs when a plasmid carrying a GbA3/4 promoter-eGFP fusion gene was transiently injected into embryos. These results strongly support the use of Minos transposons marked with the GbA3/4 promoter-eGFP for the genetic transformation of this emerging model insect species.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / genetics
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Transposable Elements*
  • Genes, Reporter
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Gryllidae / embryology
  • Gryllidae / genetics*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plasmids
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic


  • Actins
  • DNA Transposable Elements