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2004 Scientific Report

Vivarium and Transgenics

Vivarium and Transgenics Special Program Bryn Eagleson, A.A. Bryn Eagleson began her career in laboratory animal services in 1981 with Litton Bionetics at the National Cancer Institute’s Frederick Cancer Research and Development Center (NCI-FCRDC) in Maryland. In 1983, she joined the Johnson & Johnson Biotechnology Center in San Diego, California. In 1988, she returned to NCI-FCRDC, where she continued to develop her skills in transgenic technology and managed the transgenic mouse colony. During this time Ms. Eagleson attended Frederick Community College and Hood College in Frederick, Maryland. In 1999, she joined VARI as the Vivarium Director and Transgenics Special Program Manager. Managerial staff Jason Martin, RLATG Laboratory Members Technical staff Dawna Dylewski, B.S. Audra Guikema, B.S., L.V.T. Kristin Munski, B.S. Elissa Boguslawksi Vivarium staff Mark Sheely, B.S. Jamie Bondsfield Daniel Levins Sylvia Marinelli Joe Orcasitas Rich Rasmussen Robert Rogers Research Interests The goal of the vivarium and the transgenics program is to develop, provide, and support high-quality mouse modeling services for the Van Andel Research Institute investigators, Michigan Life Science Corridor collaborators, and the greater research community. We use two Topaz Technologies software products, Granite and Scion, for integrated management of the vivarium finances, the mouse breeding colony, and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) protocols and records. Imaging equipment, such as the PIXImus mouse densitometer and the Acuson Sequoia 512 ultrasound machine, is available for noninvasive imaging of mice. The VetScan blood chemistry and hematology analyzers are now available for blood analysis. Also provided by the vivarium technical staff are an extensive xenograft model development and analysis service, rederivation, surgery, dissection, necropsy, breeding, and health-status monitoring. Transgenics Fertilized eggs contain two pronuclei, one that is derived from the egg and contains the maternal genetic material and one derived from the sperm that contains the paternal genetic material. As development proceeds, these two pronuclei fuse, the genetic material mixes, and the cell proceeds to divide and develop into an embryo. Transgenic mice are produced by injecting small quantities of foreign DNA (the transgene) into a pronucleus of a one-cell fertilized egg. DNA microinjected into a pronucleus randomly integrates into the mouse genome and will theoretically be present in every cell of the resulting organism. Expression of the transgene is controlled by elements called promoters that are genetically engineered into the transgenic DNA. Depending on the selection of the promoter, the transgene can be expressed in every cell of the mouse or in specific cell populations such as neurons, skin cells, or blood cells. Temporal expression of the transgene during development can also be controlled by genetic engineering. These transgenic mice are excellent models for studying the expression and function of the transgene in vivo. 24

From left to right: Martin, Guikema, Marinelli, Eagleson, Orcasitas, Levins, Boguslawski, Rogers, Sheely, Dylewski, Bondsfield, Munski 25

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