A multicolor panel of novel lentiviral "gene ontology" (LeGO) vectors for functional gene analysis

Mol Ther. 2008 Apr;16(4):698-706. doi: 10.1038/mt.2008.6. Epub 2008 Feb 12.


Functional gene analysis requires the possibility of overexpression, as well as downregulation of one, or ideally several, potentially interacting genes. Lentiviral vectors are well suited for this purpose as they ensure stable expression of complementary DNAs (cDNAs), as well as short-hairpin RNAs (shRNAs), and can efficiently transduce a wide spectrum of cell targets when packaged within the coat proteins of other viruses. Here we introduce a multicolor panel of novel lentiviral "gene ontology" (LeGO) vectors designed according to the "building blocks" principle. Using a wide spectrum of different fluorescent markers, including drug-selectable enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP)- and dTomato-blasticidin-S resistance fusion proteins, LeGO vectors allow simultaneous analysis of multiple genes and shRNAs of interest within single, easily identifiable cells. Furthermore, each functional module is flanked by unique cloning sites, ensuring flexibility and individual optimization. The efficacy of these vectors for analyzing multiple genes in a single cell was demonstrated in several different cell types, including hematopoietic, endothelial, and neural stem and progenitor cells, as well as hepatocytes. LeGO vectors thus represent a valuable tool for investigating gene networks using conditional ectopic expression and knock-down approaches simultaneously.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aminohydrolases / biosynthesis
  • Aminohydrolases / genetics*
  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cricetinae
  • Cricetulus
  • Genetic Vectors*
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Lentivirus / genetics*
  • Mice
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / genetics
  • Transduction, Genetic*


  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • enhanced green fluorescent protein
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Aminohydrolases
  • blasticidin S deaminase