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Factors influencing efficient production of transgenic rabbits.

Murakami, H., Fujimura, T., Nomura, K. and Imai, H.

Theriogenology, 57(9), 2237-2245 (2002).

Factors that influence the efficient production of transgenic rabbits are described. The effects of the number of embryos transferred to the recipient, of recipient age, of a variety of gene constructs and of a dual use of donors as recipients (donor-recipient (DR) method)were statistically evaluated from the data collected in three experiments with three different genes. Higher survival rates of microinjected embryos were obtained in younger recipients (6-17 months), while the rates were markedly decreased in recipients over 18 months old. Integration efficiencies (transgenic rabbits per newborn) were significantly different from the gene constructs used, but not related to either the number of embryos transferred or the number of newborns obtained. No significant differences in the survival rate of embryos of injected embryos and the integration efficiency were observed in both the DR embryo transfer method and the traditional method using pseudopregnant recipients (PR). Our results suggest that the gene construct and the survival rate of injected embryos were important factors affecting the efficiency of producing transgenic rabbits, and the age of recipients was one of the important factors affecting the survival rate of the injected embryos. The DR method was useful for reducing the number of animals required for production of transgenic rabbits.