Transgenic silkworms can be useful for investigating the functions of genes in the post-genomic era. However, the common method of using a transposon as an insertion tool may result in the random integration of a foreign gene into the genome and suffer from a strong position effect. To overcome these problems, it is necessary to develop a site-specific integration system. It is known that phiC31 integrase has the capacity to mediate recombination between the target sequences attP and attB. To test the availability of site-specific integration in the silkworm, we first examined the efficiency of recombination between the target sites of the two plasmids in silkworm embryos and found that the frequency of recombination was very high. Then we constructed a host strain that possessed the target sequence attP using the common method. We injected the donor plasmid together with the phiC31 integrase mRNA into the embryos of the host strain and obtained positive lines. Structural analysis of the lines showed that site-specific integration occurred by recombination between the genomic attP site and the attB site of the donor plasmid. We can conclude from the results that phiC31 integrase has the ability to mediate the site-specific integration of transgenes into the silkworm chromosome.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science