Lentiviral gene constructs can be efficiently and specifically delivered to trophoblast cell lineages in rodents. In vivo genetic manipulation of trophoblast cell lines enables functional and developmental studies in the placenta. In this report we show that genetic modification can be produced in the extraembryonic tissues of rabbits by lentiviral gene constructs. When 8–16 cell stage embryos were injected with lentiviral particles, strong reporter gene expression resulted in the rabbit placenta. The expression pattern displayed some mosaicism. A strikingly high degree of mosaic GFP expression was detected in some parts of the yolk sac, which is a hypoblast-derived tissue. Whereas expression of the reporter gene construct was detected in placentas and yolk sacs, fetuses never expressed the transgene. As rabbits are an ideal model for functional studies in the placenta, our method would open new possibilities in rabbit biotechnology and placentation studies.
- 8–16 Cell stage
- Placenta specific
- Transgenic rabbit
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology