Infoscience

Journal article

Lentiviral Vector Mediated Transgenesis

The genetic manipulation of rodents through the generation of fully transgenic animals or via the modification of selective cells or organs is a procedure of paramount importance for biomedical research, either to address fundamental questions or to develop preclinical models of human diseases. Lentiviral vectors occupy the front stage in this scene, as they can mediate the integration and stable expression of transgenes both in vitro and in vivo. Widely used to modify a variety of cells, including re-implantable somatic and embryonic stem cells, lentiviral vectors can also be directly administered in vivo, for instance in the brain. However, perhaps their most spectacular research application is in the generation of transgenic animals. Compared with the three-decade-old DNA pronuclear injection technique, lentivector-mediated transgenesis is simple, cheap, and highly efficient. Furthermore, it can take full advantage of the great diversity of lentiviral vectors developed for other applications, and thus allows for ubiquitous or tissue-specific or constitutive or externally controllable transgene expression, as well as RNAi-mediated gene knockdown

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