DZNE Modelling Neurodegeneration

Modelling Neurodegeneration

The transgenic mouse unit of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) is located at the Center of Stroke and Dementia Research (CSD) in Grosshadern. The unit is headed by Dr. Benedikt Wefers and provides a centralized facility to generate human cellular and mouse transgenic models for research groups of the CSD using the latest genome editing technologies. The innovative CRISPR/Cas9 system serves to manipulate patient-derived induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells (e.g. to induce disease-associated mutations or to repair disease-associated mutations to generate isogenic cell lines). To generate transgenic mouse models, (e.g. creation of inducible knock-in and knock-out models) standard methods, like the manipulation of mouse embryonic stem cells, and the latest genetic technologies are used, which include the application of TALENs and the CRISPR/Cas9 system in mouse one-cell embryos.

The portfolio of the unit encompasses consulting and support in the design of new human cellular and animal models, complete execution of generation of disease models, interpretation of results, provision of standard procedures (SOPs), and providing direct access to the comprehensive EUCOMM/IKMC mouse mutant resources (coordinated by Prof. Dr. W. Wurst). The unit designs genome engineering strategies, generates targeting vectors, and creates transgenic cells and mutant mice using state-of-the-art genome modification technologies and equipment. Furthermore, new methods are constantly developed to easily and specifically induce somatic mutations, to improve targeting efficiency, and to reduce additional, unintended mutations.

Besides the generation of new transgenic lines, the service at the transgenic mouse unit also includes the import of external mouse lines by rederivation, backup of existing lines by sperm and embryo cryopreservation, and resurrection of frozen lines by direct embryo transfer or in vitro fertilization.

Source: HMGU