June 18, 2008
Updated lab methodology for identifying conserved noncoding sequences in the
X. tropicalis genome
("Genome Analysis" button at left)
New Updates on Mutations and Genetic Technology
Lab methodology for in vivo ChIP Analysis in Xenopus embryos ("Genome Analysis" button at left)
New Transgenesis Protocol
The pipid frog Xenopus tropicalis presents the opportunity to combine sophisticated embryological methods with developmental genetics in a vertebrate system. The recently sequenced genome of X. tropicalis affords unique opportunities for genomic studies as well because its evolutionary distance from mammals is such that it is possible to identify long regions of synteny and conserved gene regulatory elements. New, high throughput methods for transgenesis allow one to examine the function of these regulatory elements and to rapidly prepare transgenic lines for a variety of purposes.
Closely resembling those of its well-characterized cousin, Xenopus laevis, X. tropicalis embryos are readily manipulated by techniques ranging from explant assays to transgenesis, and can be evaluated with most X. laevis molecular probes.
Unlike the slow-growing, tetraploid X. laevis, however, X. tropicalis is diploid and has a relatively short (<5 months) life cycle, greatly increasing the feasibility of multigeneration genetic analysis.
Our group, which includes collaborators across the United States and Europe, is continuing to develop X. tropicalis as a model organism. We are optimizing husbandry regimes to further shorten generation time, adapting X. laevis protocols, and assembling a set of genetic research tools including chemical and insertional mutagenesis, gene traps, stable transgenic reporter lines, inducible gene expression systems, and genetic and physical maps of the X. tropicalis genome.
This work is supported by NIH grant RR13221.
Robert Grainger, University of Virginia
Department of Biology, Gilmer Hall
PO Box 400328
Charlottesville, VA. 22904-4328
Phone: (434) 982-5495
Fax: (434) 982-5626
Other laboratories involved in the NIH genetics consortium:
Enrique Amaya, University of Manchester , U.K. Website
Frank Conlon, University of North Carolina , Chapel Hill Website
Richard Harland, University of California , Berkeley Website
Mustafa Khokha, Yale University Website
Paul Mead, St. Jude Children's Hospital Website
Amy Sater, University of Houston Website
Derek Stemple, Sanger Centre, U.K. Website
Lyle Zimmerman, National Institute for Medical Research, U.K. Website