In order to define the cellular specificity of the interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein (IRBP) promoter in the retina, we linked the human IRBP promoter to the β-galactosidase (lacZ) gene and made five lines of transgenic mice. In three of the five transgenic mouse lines, retinas showed positive staining upon incubation with 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-β-d-galactoside (X-gal). Mice from one line (OVE278B) showed positive X-gal staining throughout the retina except for the most peripheral regions. Interestingly, the staining was heterogeneous throughout the retina. Heavily stained regions were interspersed with lightly stained areas. Mice in two other lines showed highly mosaic X-gal staining patterns. Histological examination demonstrated that staining was confined to photoreceptor cells in all three expressing families. Furthermore, electron microscopy showed that the promoter is active in both rod and cone cells. Our results demonstrate that the human IRBP promoter can be used to obtain photoreceptor-specific gene expression in transgenic mice.
- interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein
- transgenic mice
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sensory Systems
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience