The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is participating as exhibitor at the current FELASA-SECAL Congress, being held in Barcelona (Spain), on June 10-13, 2013. Alison Cameron, the ISTT administrative assistant, will be responsible for the ISTT booth. If you are attending this international conference on Laboratory Animal Science, please come to visit us. We’ll be deligthed to welcome all of you at the ISTT booth (#230), at the FELASA-SECAL 2013 venue, in the beautiful town of Barcelona. Looking forward to meeting you there!
Today, on June 1st, 2013, Jan Parker-Thornburg, Ph.D., Associate Professor at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA, and Manager of the Genetically Engineered Mouse Facility (GEMF), has stepped down from the ISTT council, voluntarily, after having been part of the ISTT Executive Committee since the inception of this Society, in 2006, being elected in 2006 and re-elected in 2010. With her most generous gesture, Jan allowed a new council member to be elected in 2013, and gave herself the required distance from council, in order to prepare herself to run for the elections of the next President of the ISTT during 2014, as she recently declared, hoping to deserve and receive the support from ISTT members and be elected among any additional candidate.
The activities and initiatives where Jan has participated or led while serving as member of the ISTT council are numerous. Just to name a few: the great meeting she organized in Houston in January 2008; her leadership and ISTT driving force to become an AALAS affiliate organization in May 2009; her generous effort preparing embryo handling tubing/kits that were distributed among ISTT members in Berlin, at the TT2010 meeting; her leadership in the nominations committee, through which all of the new members have been eventually elected to serve at the ISTT council, not to mention her continuous and most dedicated participation in all council discussions.
Dear Jan, on behalf of the entire ISTT family, you truly deserve our gratitude, respect and a big applause. Let’s hope that this farewell is only transient and soon you will come back to lead and further boost our Society!
See you soon and many thanks!
The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) will be participating and/or co-sponsoring numerous events during the month of June 2013. At first, on June 7, 2013, our ISTT colleagues from Nantes (France), Ignacio Anegon and Séverine Ménoret, experts in the generation of transgenic rats, will be holding their 2013 Nantes Transgenic meeting on “Technical advances in the generation of transgenic animals and in their applications“. Next, on June 10-13, 2013, in Barcelona (Spain), the 12th FELASA-SECAL congress will take place, where the ISTT will be participating in two ways. First, the ISTT will co-sponsor the satellite workshop on Mouse Sperm Cryopreservation, to be held within the 2013 FELASA meeting, on 10 June 2013, Barcelona, Spain, and organized by ISTT members Jorge Sztein (NIH, USA) and Jesús Martínez-Palacio (CIEMAT, Madrid, Spain). Second, the ISTT will be participating as exhibitor and will attend the 2013 FELASA meeting. The ISTT will have a booth in Barcelona (#230), manned by the ISTT administrative assistant, Alison Cameron, and where all ISTT members (and non-ISTT members) are welcome to visiting us. Finally, immediately next, our ISTT colleagues from The Netherlands, Marian Van Roon (VU, Amsterdam) and Sjef Verbeek (LUMC, Leiden), have organized their 2013 Workshop on Innovative Mouse Models (IMM2013). This 7th Workshop on Innovative Mouse Models will be held on 13-14 June 2013, at the Leiden University Medical Center, LUMC, Leiden, The Netherlands, and the ISTT will be co-sponsoring also this event. ISTT members will be entitled to reduced registrations at all these events, proudly co-sponsored by the ISTT.
These are the official results of the 2013 ISTT elections, for choosing a new ISTT Vice-President and two new council members. Benoît Kanzler (Freiburg, Germany) has been elected ISTT Vice-President. Karen Brennan (Sydney, Australia) and Jorge Sztein (Rockville, MD, USA) have been elected new ISTT council members. All three candidates received the support of the majority of voting ISTT members. The official start of their four-year term will begin on January 1, 2014. However, they will be immediately appointed as elected ISTT Vice-President and elected ISTT council members, respectively, to overlap and interact with the rest of officers and council members during 2013, in order to become familiar with the administrative and managing tasks of our Society. Congratulations to all of them!.
The ISTT would like to express its respect and sincere appreciation for the willingness, committment and generousity of all candidates participating in this ISTT election process, including Wenhao Xu (Charlottesville, VA, USA), who did run also for the ISTT Vice-Presidency.
The TT2013 meeting report, written by Douglas Strathdee (Beatson Institute for Cancer Research, Glasgow, Scotland, UK) and C. Bruce A. Whitelaw (Division of Developmental Biology, The Roslin Institute and Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Roslin, Midlothian, Scotland, UK) has just been published, online, at the Transgenic Research journal web site. This review, entitled ‘TT2013 meeting report: the Transgenic Technology meeting visits Asia for the first time‘ nicely summarizes the talks and activities held during the recent 11th Transgenic Technology meeting, held in Guangzhou (China), on February 25-27, 2013, along with the subsequent hands-on workshop that was organized, on February 28-March 2, 2013. Douglas and Bruce, together with Peter Hohenstein (Division of Developmental Biology, The Roslin Institute and Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Roslin, Midlothian, Scotland, UK) are the Organizers of the next 12th Transgenic Technology meeting, TT2014, which will be held in Edinburgh (Scotland, UK) on October 6-8, 2014.
Researchers at the Institute of Animal Reproduction in Uruguay (IRAUy), led by Alejo Menchaca (ISTT Member), in collaboration with members of the Transgenic and Experimental Animal Unit (UATE) of the Institut Pasteur de Montevideo, led by Martina Crispo (ISTT Member) and Ignacio Anegon‘s laboratory (ISTT Member), of the Transgenic Rats common facility, ITERT, INSERM, Nantes, France, working in Europe but born in Uruguay, have announced the generation of several green transgenic sheep made with lentiviruses carrying a GFP reporter transgene. These green animals represent the first transgenic sheep produced in Uruguay, and in SouthAmerica. According to the press release and the authors of this biotechnological project, up to nine transgenic sheep were generated last year, 6 months ago, at the IRAUy, after 2 years of work.
This proof-of-concept experiment demonstrates the technological skills and capacity of these teams and institutions in Uruguay, who have been able to produce these first transgenic lambs, and hence, they must be praised by their achievement. In the future, additional genetically modified livestock will be created, aiming to produce recombinant proteins of biomedical or industrial interest in the milk of these transgenic animals, following similar experiments already carried out in other countries. The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is proud to count among its members these three excellent researchers and wishes to congratulate them for their success in their experiments.
The most immediate precedents for genetically modified livestock in SouthAmerica include transgenic goats generated in 2009 by the team of Vicente Freitas (ISTT Member) at the State University of Ceará, Fortaleza (Brazil), expressing hG-CSF in their milk, and several transgenic cows generated by a biotech firm, Biosidus, and by INTA, in Argentina, in 2008 and 2011, respectively, producing therapeutical proteins in their milk.
The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) will be present, as exhibitor, at the FELASA-2013 Congress that will be held in Barcelona (Spain), on 10-13 June 2013. The ISTT had already supported and participated as co-sponsor in previous FELASA meetings, but this time our Society will be represented officially by Alison Cameron, the ISTT administrative assistant, who will be responsible for the ISTT booth (#230) at the FELASA-2013 congress venue. We warmly invite all ISTT members attending the FELASA-2013 meeting to visit us at the ISTT booth.
Mouse sperm cryopreservation: satellite workshop at the 2013 FELASA-SECAL Congress in Barcelona, Spain, 10 June 2013March 26th, 2013
The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is pleased to announce the approved co-sponsorship of the Mouse Sperm Cryopreservation satellite workshop, organized by Jorge Sztein (NIH, Rockville, MD, USA) and Jesús Martínez Palacio (CIEMAT, Madrid, Spain), both ISTT members, in Barcelona (Spain) on 10 June 2013, within the activities associated to the 2013 FELASA-SECAL Congress in Barcelona, Spain, 10-13 June 2013. The main objective of this workshop is to acquaint students on reliable methods of mouse sperm cryopreservation, Jax and Nakagata, without requiring appliances or large investments to establishing a program at their centers. This course involves manipulation of animals and LN2.
This half-day satellite workshop will be held on 10 June 2013 from 09.00 to 12.00 h. at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Barcelona, Experimental Animal Unit. Satellite workshop registration fee: €120. Seats are limited to 24 participants. ISTT members, including those already registered to attend this workshop, are entitled to 25% discount. Interested participants should contact: email@example.com
EMBO Practical Course – Developmental neurobiology: From worms to mammals, 30 June to 13 July 2013 – London, UKMarch 25th, 2013
The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) will be pleased to support the 2013 Edition of the EMBO Practical Course on Developmental Neurobiology: From Worms to Mammals, which will be held at the MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology, King’s College London, UK, on 30 June to 13 July 2013, organized by Robert Hindges (ISTT member) and other colleagues. The ISTT will be promoted among lecturers, instructors and participants at this course and, at the same time, several ISTT gadgets will be distributed among participants too. According to the Course web site, the main objetives of this 2013 EMBO course are:
- Learn the state of the art techniques used in modern developmental neuroscience
- Acquire a knowledge of brain development in 6 different species (C. elegans, Drosophila, zebrafish, Xenopus, chick and mouse)
- Interact with international leading neuroscientists
“Yale scientist Francis Hugh (Frank) Ruddle, a pioneer in genetic engineering and the study of developmental genetics, died March 10 in New Haven. He was 83 years old“. This is how a text in memoriam of Frank Ruddle, who passed away last Sunday, begins, at the Yale University web site. Frank Ruddle was Professor Emeritus at the Department of Molecular and Developmental, Yale University. In collaboration with Jon W. Gordon, from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, at the time one of his post-docs, Frank Ruddle devised and succeeded in creating the first transgenic mice, the first animals genetically modified after microinjecting a plasmid DNA into the pronuclei of fertilized mouse eggs. These seminal papers were published in 1980 and 1981. In order to remember Frank Ruddle’s pioneer contributions to the field of transgenic technologies, to highlight the relevance of their findings among our youngest colleagues, and to adequately assess, in perspective, their fantastic achievements, made more than 30 years ago (or only 30 years ago, depending how you would like to see the case) I am citing here the full abstracts, as they appear published in their respective journals, PNAS (in 1980) and Science (in 1981).
Genetic transformation of mouse embryos by microinjection of purified DNA.
Gordon JW, Scangos GA, Plotkin DJ, Barbosa JA, Ruddle FH.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1980 Dec;77(12):7380-4.
ABSTRACT: “A recombinant plasmid composed of segments of herpes simplex virus and simian virus 40 viral DNA inserted into the bacterial plasmid pBR322 was microinjected into pronuclei of fertilized mouse oocytes. The embryos were implanted in the oviducts of pseudopregnant females and allowed to develop to term. DNA from newborn mice was evaluated by the Southern blotting technique for the presence of DNA homologous to the injected plasmid. Two of 78 mice in one series of injections showed clear homology, though the injected sequences had been rearranged. Band intensities from the two positive mice were consistent with the presence of donor DNA in most or all of the cells of the newborns. These results demonstrate that genes can be introduced into the mouse genome by direct insertion into the nuclei of early embryos. This technique affords the opportunity to study problems of gene regulation and cell differentiation in a mammalian system by application of recombinant DNA technology.”
Integration and stable germ line transmission of genes injected into mouse pronuclei.
Gordon JW, Ruddle FH.
Science. 1981 Dec 11;214(4526):1244-6.
ABSTRACT: “Genetic material has been successfully transferred into the genomes of newborn mice by injection of that material into pronuclei of fertilized eggs. Initial results indicated two patterns of processing the injected DNA: one in which the material was not integrated into the host genome, and another in which the injected genes became associated with high molecular weight DNA. These patterns are maintained through further development to adulthood. The evidence presented indicates the covalent association of injected DNA with host sequences, and transmission of such linked sequences in a Mendelian distribution to two succeeding generations of progeny.”
In summary, they injected some heterologous DNA into the pronuclei of fertilized mouse eggs. This DNA was eventually covalently associated with the host DNA (integrated) and was also successfully transmitted to the progeny of the resulting genetically-modified mice (transgenic), therefore it was inherited as a new DNA piece, a new genetic trait, thereby creating a new mouse strain, a new animal model, a trangenic mouse. Isn’t that splendid and beautifully simple? Indeed, but someone had to envisage first the experiment, someone had to carry out the injections successfully. Someone was first in demonstating this was actually possible. This was Frank Ruddle.
On behalf of the International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) I want to express my most sincere condolences to his family, colleagues and friends. This is a great loss for the transgenic community.