Inducible and reversible regulation of gene expression is a powerful approach for unraveling gene functions. Here, we describe the generation of a system to efficiently downregulate in a reversible and inducible manner the Pvalb gene coding for the calcium-binding protein parvalbumin (PV) in mice. We made use of an IPTG-inducible short hairpin RNA to activate Pvalb transcript knockdown and subsequently downregulate PV. The downregulation was rapidly reversed after withdrawal of IPTG. In vitro and in vivo experiments revealed a decrease in PV expression of ≥50% in the presence of IPTG and full reversibility after IPTG removal. We foresee that the tightly regulated and reversible PV downregulation in mice in vivo will provide a new tool for the control of Pvalb transcript expression in a temporal manner. Because PV protein and PVALB transcript levels were found to be lower in the brain of patients with autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia, the novel transgenic mouse line might serve as a model to investigate the putative role of PV in these neurodevelopmental disorders.
Keywords: RNA interference; inducible system autism spectrum disorder; lentiviral transgenesis; parvalbumin.
© 2019 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.