Database for exchangeable gene trap clones: pathway and gene ontology analysis of exchangeable gene trap clone mouse lines

Dev Growth Differ. 2014 Feb;56(2):161-74. doi: 10.1111/dgd.12116. Epub 2014 Jan 20.


Gene trapping in embryonic stem (ES) cells is a proven method for large-scale random insertional mutagenesis in the mouse genome. We have established an exchangeable gene trap system, in which a reporter gene can be exchanged for any other DNA of interest through Cre/mutant lox-mediated recombination. We isolated trap clones, analyzed trapped genes, and constructed the database for Exchangeable Gene Trap Clones (EGTC) []. The number of registered ES cell lines was 1162 on 31 August 2013. We also established 454 mouse lines from trap ES clones and deposited them in the mouse embryo bank at the Center for Animal Resources and Development, Kumamoto University, Japan. The EGTC database is the most extensive academic resource for gene-trap mouse lines. Because we used a promoter-trap strategy, all trapped genes were expressed in ES cells. To understand the general characteristics of the trapped genes in the EGTC library, we used Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) for pathway analysis and found that the EGTC ES clones covered a broad range of pathways. We also used Gene Ontology (GO) classification data provided by Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI) to compare the functional distribution of genes in each GO term between trapped genes in the EGTC mouse lines and total genes annotated in MGI. We found the functional distributions for the trapped genes in the EGTC mouse lines and for the RefSeq genes for the whole mouse genome were similar, indicating that the EGTC mouse lines had trapped a wide range of mouse genes.

Keywords: embryonic stem cell; gene trap; knockout mice; mouse; mutagenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Computational Biology
  • DNA, Recombinant / genetics*
  • Databases, Genetic
  • Electroporation
  • Embryonic Stem Cells / metabolism*
  • Gene Ontology
  • Genes, Reporter / genetics*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Mutant Strains / genetics*
  • Mutagenesis, Insertional / methods*
  • Plasmids / genetics


  • DNA, Recombinant