Are you at a point in your research where you need a new custom animal model? Are you unable to find an off-the-shelf model that is suited to your research? A better model can be the next step for your research no matter what you study. If you’re wondering where to buy transgenic mice, look no further than ingenious targeting laboratory. We understand that purchasing an animal model may seem like a complicated process, which is why we’ve put together this guide to simplify it for you.
A transgenic mouse is a type of mouse model with an extra genetic sequence inserted into its genome. This sequence, also known as a transgene, varies from model to model as each transgenic mouse model is specifically designed with certain experiments in mind. Many off-the-shelf transgenic models are readily available but if you can’t find a suitable line it may be necessary to generate a custom transgenic mouse. This is crucial to keep in mind when you’re looking to buy transgenic mice for your next research project. A simple genetic design for a transgenic construct is shown here:
Knocking in a constitutive promoter and cDNA will give strong expression across all tissues. Different knockins can be used to achieve tissue-specific expression or drug-inducible expression.
Transgenic mice became widely available in the 1980s including the famous oncomouse published in 1984 for cancer studies. It was this model, as well as other transgenic mice that were generated in the next few years, that helped the field of cancer research grow into what we know it as today. That’s because oncogene transgenic mice allowed scientists to observe the development of cancer in certain organs that could not be replicated in tissue cultures. Now, it is possible to buy transgenic mice that model many types of organ-specific cancers and the particular characteristics that come with each one. 
ingenious targeting laboratory offers custom mouse models that are tailored to our clients’ specifications and research needs. We established ourselves as one of the very first mouse gene targeting companies in 1998. Since then, our models have been featured in over 300 client publications including studies published in Science, Nature, and Cell. Our clients choose to buy transgenic mice and work with us again and again because of the quality of our work and the strong relationships we build with them.
Once you decide to partner with us, our scientific consultants will guide you through the process of buying transgenic mice. We begin with a quote consultation that will help us determine what type of model you’d like to generate and what strategies are available.
For pricing information, please download ingenious’ Pricing Guide or contact us for a custom quote. What sets us apart from other companies is that when you buy transgenic mice from ingenious, you are guaranteed to get your model, not just your money back. Because we’re backed by over 20 years of experience we are proficient in working with both classic and cutting-edge technologies.
Our team of experts is standing by to help get your new project off the ground quickly. We will be there with you every step of the way to make sure your mice are accurately targeted and arrive safely at your facility. You can also elect for post project services, such as colony management consultation, cryopreservation, genotyping, and more to help you get the most out of your new custom mouse line. Get started on your custom model project by following our short, 4-step guide.
When buying transgenic mice, it’s important to consider whether you may need targeted insertion over random insertion. With targeted transgenics you can expect more predictable and consistent results. That’s because your construct is inserted into a specific genomic location, such as a safe harbor locus like Rosa26. While ingenious specializes in working with the Rosa26 locus, other safe harbor locus options are available. Some examples of models that can be generated by targeting the Rosa26 locus are constitutive expression, tissue-specific expression, conditional expression, and conditional / inducible expression. Targeted transgenics are by no means limited to the use of safe harbor loci however. The advantage of this powerful method is that a sequence can be inserted almost anywhere, for example to modify the expression pattern or protein product of a gene of interest.
Random insertion, on the other hand, results in your transgene being inserted somewhere in the genome with no control over its location. While this may be suitable for some studies, you may find that you require your construct to be placed in a specific location in order to accurately study your gene of interest. Otherwise, your research may be left up to chance. Today the methods of the 1980s are still used to generate random insertion transgenic lines because founder mice can be produced quickly and at low cost. These advantages are greatly reduced when you consider that each potential founder has the transgene integrated at a different site. Offspring from multiple founders must be carefully screened to find mice where the transgene functions as planned.
For more information, please read our blog post 4 Reasons To Use Targeted Transgenic Mice Over Random Insertion.
With a targeted cDNA knockin it’s possible to alter a gene in the mouse genome and make it express a reporter gene or other alternate cDNA sequence, for example the sequence of a human gene. The sequence of Cre recombinase can be inserted using this method to create a new tissue-specific expression line. This is important to consider the next time you’re looking to buy transgenic mice.
Targeted knockins often inactivate the mouse gene and result in the transgene being expressed in its place. However, the knockin strategy is flexible and it’s possible to co-express the cDNA along with your target gene. This makes it possible, for example, to generate a line that expresses Cre along with the targeted gene.
ingenious targeting laboratory offers two proprietary technologies for generating transgenic models using the Rosa26 locus: Rapid-Rosa26™ Targeting and Inducible Rosa26-Express™ Targeting. The advantage of using a safe harbor locus is that your overexpression construct can be introduced into a location that won’t interfere with surrounding genes, thus isolating it. This results in targeted expression that is more predictable.
With Rapid-Rosa26™ targeting, when you buy transgenic mice, you can expect shorter timelines and a reliable, high-quality model. One concern researchers may have about targeted insertion is that it may take longer to generate, and at a higher cost. However, ingenious’ Rapid-Rosa26™ technology allows us to generate a custom transgenic model with accurate targeting on shorter timelines, enabled by vectors that have been created with thoroughly validated strategies. An example of a standard strategy is shown here, for conditional expression of a specific cDNA. Tissue-specific expression is achieved by crossing the Rosa26 transgenic line to one of the hundreds of available Cre-expressing lines.
What’s special about ingenious’ Inducible Rosa26-Express™ technology is that it allows control over gene expression at the tissue-specific level at any point in your experiment. Inducible expression systems in mouse models can involve extra time to produce the desired results, such as additional mating and founder screening. To simplify the process, ingenious has developed our Inducible Rosa26-Express™ system, which eliminates the need for transactivator or silencer mouse lines by incorporating more elements into a single targeting vector. A high degree of control over cDNA expression is made possible by a two-step activation process. First, expression of the tet transactivator protein rtTA is turned on by crossing the Rosa-Express™ line to a tissue-specific Cre line:
Full activation requires the drug doxycycline to be administered which triggers activation of the tetO promoter by rtTA.
Our Rapid-Rosa26™ and Rosa26-Express™ methods make it easier than ever before to buy transgenic mice for experiments that require tissue-specific and inducible expression.
If you’re ready to buy transgenic mice for your next research project, get in touch with ingenious targeting laboratory. Fill out our quote form and one of our scientific experts will provide you with a custom quote within 1 business day.
1) Hanahan D, Wagner EF, Palmiter RD. 2007. The origins of oncomice: a history of the first transgenic mice genetically engineered to develop cancer. Genes & Development 21: 2258-2270.
An ingenious client has published a recent paper, RIPK3 Restricts Viral Pathogenesis via Cell Death-Independent Neuroinflammation, using a mouse model of West Nile virus (WNV) encephalitis generated with our Rapid-Rosa26™ technology. This involved Rosa26 insertion of conditionally-regulated cDNA, including FLAG and mCherry reporter. Using this custom model, our client was able to demonstrate the relationship between RIPK3 and viral pathogenesis.
Daniels BP, Snyder AG, Olsen TM, Orozco S, Oguin TH, 3rd, Tait SW, Martinez J, Gale M, Jr., Loo YM, Oberst A. 2017. RIPK3 Restricts Viral Pathogenesis via Cell Death-Independent Neuroinflammation. Cell 169: 301-313 e311.