A mouse model of uterine leiomyosarcoma

Am J Pathol. 2004 Jan;164(1):325-36. doi: 10.1016/S0002-9440(10)63122-7.


We are using an approach that is based on the cre/loxP recombination process and involves a binary system of Cre-producing and Cre-responding transgenic mice to achieve ubiquitous or tissue-specific expression of oncoproteins. To develop mouse models of tumorigenesis, Cre-producers are mated with responder animals carrying a dormant oncogene targeted into the 3' untranslated region of the locus encoding cytoplasmic beta-actin (actin cassette). Production of oncoprotein from a bicistronic message is accomplished in bitransgenic progeny by Cre-mediated excision of a segment flanked by loxP sites that is located upstream from the oncogenic sequence. Widespread Cre-dependent activation and expression of an actin-cassette transgene encoding the T antigens of the SV40 early region (SVER) commencing in embryos was compatible with normal development and did not impair viability. However, at approximately 3 months of age, all female animals developed massive uterine leiomyosarcomas, whereas practically all males exhibited enormously enlarged seminal vesicles because of pronounced hyperplasia of the smooth muscle layers. In addition, because of smooth muscle hyperproliferation, marked dilation of the gallbladder was observed in mice of both sexes. To begin exploring aberrant signaling events in the SVER-triggered tumorigenic pathways, we analyzed the expression profile of leiomyosarcomas by DNA microarray analysis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Actins / genetics
  • Animals
  • Antigens, Polyomavirus Transforming / genetics
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Female
  • Gallbladder / pathology
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic*
  • Hyperplasia / pathology
  • Immunoblotting
  • Integrases / genetics
  • Leiomyoma / genetics
  • Leiomyoma / pathology
  • Leiomyosarcoma / genetics
  • Leiomyosarcoma / pathology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Muscle, Smooth / pathology
  • Mutagenesis, Insertional / methods*
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Seminal Vesicles / pathology
  • Transgenes
  • Uterine Neoplasms / genetics
  • Uterine Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Viral Proteins / genetics


  • Actins
  • Antigens, Polyomavirus Transforming
  • Viral Proteins
  • Cre recombinase
  • Integrases