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Succeeding with Mouse Model Generation: Key Considerations for the Design of Transgenic Models

While an exceptional number of genetically engineered mouse and rat models already exist, it is often still the case that design and production of a new custom-generated model can prove advantageous. Developing custom models through transgenesis is often thought to be a relatively simple and fast approach. 

Transgenes can be introduced into the mouse genome in either a random or targeted manner to generate transgenic mice, and each strategy has long been used to develop mouse models that express foreign gene products in a desirable or advantageous manner. Many different factors may impact the success of a new transgenic model generation project. Two important factors which may arise, depending on the model design, are the choice of promoter and the choice of safe harbor site.

This white paper provides guidance in selecting the right promoter and safe harbor site for your custom-generated transgenic mouse model. Taconic model generation experts explore the background associated with each choice, as well as basic options for a safe harbor site, to provide a starting point to those considering the generation of a new transgenic model. 


Read this white paper to:

  • Discover how promoters and safe harbor loci can influence the generation and performance of your transgenic model.
  • Understand how to generate custom mouse models through targeted and random transgenesis.
  • Get insight into how to mitigate potential risks associated with your choice of promoter.
  • Explore the benefits and limitations of different safe harbor loci commonly used in genetic modification.
  • Obtain guidance from model generation experts to ensure the success of your project from the early planning stages.

Get Access Here

Did You Know?

Taconic has both a long history and extensive expertise in generating random and targeted transgenic mouse models.

EF1α, UbC, CMV, and CAG promoters are widely used to drive the ubiquitous and constitutive expression of a transgene.

ROSA26 (located on mouse chromosome 6) is the most widely used safe harbor locus and was originally identified in a promoter trap screen.

About The Authors


Patrick Gordon, PhD

Scientific Program Manager, Custom Model Generation Solutions

Patrick has 13+ years of experience with genetically engineered mouse models. Apart from his own training and research, this has included the design and oversight of large-scale colony management programs, as well as the design, generation, and validation of new models. He also has deep expertise in the use of Cre/loxP systems for conditional gene expression.

Broadly trained in neuroscience, genetics, and developmental biology, Patrick obtained his PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Utah.

Kenn Albrecht, PhD

Associate Director, Custom Model Generation Solutions

For 25+ years Kenn has been engaged in developing and characterizing mouse models of human disease using his training in classical and molecular genetics, genomics, and developmental biology.

While at Boston University School of Medicine, where he is now an adjunct faculty member, he led the Transgenic and Genome Engineering core facility, was one of the founding directors of the Genome Science Institute, and ran an NIH-funded research lab. Kenn obtained his PhD in Genetics from the University of Connecticut.

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