Mutagenesis of diploid mammalian genes by gene entrapment

Nucleic Acids Res. 2006;34(20):e139. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkl728. Epub 2006 Oct 24.


The present study describes a genome-wide method for biallelic mutagenesis in mammalian cells. Novel poly(A) gene trap vectors, which contain features for direct cloning vector-cell fusion transcripts and for post-entrapment genome engineering, were used to generate a library of 979 mutant ES cells. The entrapment mutations generally disrupted gene expression and were readily transmitted through the germline, establishing the library as a resource for constructing mutant mice. Cells homozygous for most entrapment loci could be isolated by selecting for enhanced expression of an inserted neomycin-resistance gene that resulted from losses of heterozygosity (LOH). The frequencies of LOH measured at 37 sites in the genome ranged from 1.3 x 10(-5) to 1.2 x 10(-4) per cell and increased with increasing distance from the centromere, implicating mitotic recombination in the process. The ease and efficiency of obtaining homozygous mutations will (i) facilitate genetic studies of gene function in cultured cells, (ii) permit genome-wide studies of recombination events that result in LOH and mediate a type of chromosomal instability important in carcinogenesis, and (iii) provide new strategies for phenotype-driven mutagenesis screens in mammalian cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Line
  • Diploidy
  • Embryonic Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Gene Targeting / methods*
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Loss of Heterozygosity
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutagenesis*
  • Sequence Tagged Sites

Associated data

  • GENBANK/DX977440
  • GENBANK/DX977449