RNA interference (RNAi), a sequence-specific mRNA degradation induced by double-stranded RNA (dsRNA), is a common approach employed to specifically silence genes. Experimental RNAi in plant and invertebrate models is frequently induced by long dsRNA. However, in mammals, short RNA molecules are used preferentially since long dsRNA can provoke sequence-independent type I interferon response. A notable exception are mammalian oocytes where the interferon response is suppressed and long dsRNA is a potent and specific trigger of RNAi. Transgenic RNAi is an adaptation of RNAi allowing for inducing sequence-specific silencing upon expression of dsRNA. A decade ago, we have developed a vector for oocyte-specific expression of dsRNA, which has been used to study gene function in mouse oocytes on numerous occasions. This review provides an overview and discusses benefits and drawbacks encountered by us and our colleagues while working with the oocytes-specific transgenic RNAi system.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.