Remembering Laura Pozzi

Laura Pozzi, pioneer of mouse transgenesis in Italy
Laura Pozzi, pioneer of mouse transgenesis in Italy

On August 7th 2016, Laura Pozzi, a pioneer of transgenesis in Italy, passed away at the age of 80.

She was associate professor at the University “La Sapienza” in Rome and during the 80’s of the last century was among the first researchers in Italy to set up, with minimal equipments, often handmade, and with great commitment and personal sacrifice, a laboratory for the generation of transgenic mice. This facility was for a long time one of the few reference points for anyone who wanted to get a transgenic mouse in Italy, so that colleagues jokingly called her “the mother of all the Italian transgenic mice”. Over the years she trained a lot of people on transgenic technologies. On them she had a profound influence and to them she left an irreplaceable legacy of theoretical and practical knowledge that has had a strong impact on their future professional life. Many people who are now operating in the field of transgenesis in Italy, were formed at her school. She was a strict and demanding teacher, but it was so clear to us, her trainees , that her ultimate goal was to provide the best training and formation possible, that we all loved and respected her as a mother and master.

Open-minded, cultivated and great traveler, conversing with her was always pleasant and interesting. Even in private life her main purpose was to be helpful to others: she spent herself as a teacher of Italian language to foreign refugees, like a grandmother she took care of children of friends and neighbours. And all this without bragging and always with her smile and her subtle English humor that she absorbed during a long stay in Great Britain.

After retirement she always remained in touch with her former students and she followed with pleasure and interest, even though she was not a member, the ISTT site using the password of one of us. When, with advancing age, she realized that it was impossible for her to be independent as she wanted and not wanting to be a burden to anyone, with great clarity, serenity and courage she decided that her moment had arrived and left this world, recommending to friends to remember her with a smile.

Elisabetta Mattei, Laura Tatangelo and Isabella Manni


It is with gread sadness that I learnt from Elisabetta Mattei about the recent passing of Laura Pozzi. She was my first mentor in mouse transgenesis. I was privileged to attend, as the only non-Italian trainee in a small group of five students, a two-weeks intensive practical course on the generation of transgenic mice organized in Siena in 1990, at the headquarters of the pharmaceutical company Sclavo. At the time I was still finishing my PhD in Plant Molecular Genetics, using maize as my experimental model, and I was already preparing myself to begin a future postdoctoral stay in Heidelberg as a mouse geneticist. I landed in Tuscany knowing nothing about transgenic mice and, thanks to the wisdom and teaching abilities of Laura and her team of collaborators, I left Italy with the required solid and robust starting knowledge to work with mice that has travelled with me since then. I went from maize to mice and Laura played a fundamental role in my transitioning between these two experimental models. Throughout the years I remained in touch with Laura and we often commented technical breakthroughs in the field. She was also happy to see the developments and success of the ISTT. I always had her as my first reference in mouse transgenesis. She deserves to be remembered as a most influential person for the mouse transgenics community in Italy and Europe.

Lluis Montoliu

Advances in the Generation of Genetically Modified Animal Models: International Course & Symposium, Institut Pasteur de Montevideo (Uruguay), 7-18 September 2015

Advances in the Generation of Genetically Modified Animal Models: International Course & Symposium, Institut Pasteur de Montevideo (Uruguay), 7-18 September 2015
Advances in the Generation of Genetically Modified Animal Models: International Course & Symposium, Institut Pasteur de Montevideo (Uruguay), 7-18 September 2015

The International Society for Trangenic Technologies (ISTT) proudly co-sponsors the International Course & Symposium on Advances in the Generation of Genetically Modified Animal Models, to be held at the Institut Pasteur de Montevideo (Uruguay), organized by ISTT Members Martina Crispo (Unidad de Animales Transgénicos y Experimentación, UATE, Institut Pasteur de Montevideo) and Alejo Menchaca (Instituto de Reproducción Animal de Uruguay, IRAUy), on 8-15 September 2015.

The aim is to offer a training course of excellence for researchers and technicians working in animal transgenic field. The topics will be focused on both the basic knowledge and the latest advances in transgenic technologies. The course consists of a 1st week of lectures sessions and a 2nd week of practical sessions. In addition, a mini symposium (11-12 September) is organized in order to extend the impact of the presence of the professors to other researchers, technicians and posgraduate students. Current programs for the COURSE and MINI-SYMPOSIUM.

Confirmed speakers attending this Course and mini-Symposium include:

  • Michel Cohen-Tannoudji, IPParis, France
  • Francina Langa, IP Paris, France, ISTT member
  • Ignacio Anegón, INSERM, Nantes, France, ISTT member
  • Lluis Montoliu, CNB, Spain, ISTT member
  • Jorge Sztein, consultant, Spain
  • Sylva Haralambous, HPI, Greece, ISTT member
  • Naomi Nakagata, CARD, Kumamoto U, Japan, ISTT member
  • Charles Long, Texas A&M University, USA
  • Daniel Salamone, Fagro, UBA, Argentina
  • Adrian Mutto, UNSM, Argentina
  • Marcelo Rubinstein, INGEBI, Argentina, ISTT member
  • Marcelo Bertolini, UNIFOR, Brazil

Local professors and instructors include:

  • Magdalena Cárdenas, IP Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Ana Paula Mulet, IP Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Geraldine Schlapp, IP Montevideo, Uruguay, ISTT member
  • María Noel Meikle, IP Montevideo, Uruguay, ISTT member
  • Gabriel Fernández, IP Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Ana Paula Arévalo, IP Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Martina Crispo, IP Montevideo, Uruguay, ISTT member
  • Pedro C. dos Santos, IRAUy, Uruguay
  • Natalibeth Barrera, IRAUy, Uruguay
  • Federico Cuadro, IRAUy, Uruguay
  • Alejo Menchaca, IRAUy, Montevideo, Uruguay, ISTT member

People interested in participating in this COURSE must send the COURSE Application Form to
A maximum of 20 students will be accepted for the COURSE taking into account personal qualifications.
There is no registration fee for the COURSE. Support for accommodation, per diem and local transportation will be provided to all participants from abroad. Travel expenses are not included.
People interested in participating in the MINI SYMPOSIUM must send the SYMPOSIUM Registration Form to
SYMPOSIUM fee is U$S 100.

Deadline for COURSE applications is June 28th
Deadline for SYMPOSIUM registrations is July 19th
For any further information contact:


SALAAM kick-off meeting in Munich: thinking big (the important role of large animal models)

SALAAM kick-off meeting in Munich: 15-17 December 2014
SALAAM kick-off meeting in Munich: 15-17 December 2014

About a month ago, shortly before the season break, and very timely to enjoy its Christmas Market (Weihnachtsmarkt), the kick-off meeting of the Project SALAAM (Sharing Advances on Large Animal Models) took place in Munich (Germany), 15-17 December 2014, beautifully organized by Eckhard Wolf and Pascale Chavatte-Palmer, Chair and Co-Chair of this EU-COST Action BM1308. This conference, open to any interested researcher in the field, represented the official launch of the SALAAM project, to discuss about the role of large animal models in Translational Medicine, “Bridging the Gap between Basic and Clinical Research”, as indicated in the SALAAM logo. During these three days, about 120 scientists, including researchers not initially associated with SALAAM (including several ISTT members), gathered at the Gene Center, LMU Munich, to share their views about the role of large animal models in biomedicine.

The meeting started with a welcome address by Eckhard Wolf (LMU, Munich, Chair of SALAAM) who set the stage and underlined the need to use appropriate animal models for succeeding in translational research. In the past, large amount of resources have been devoted to rodents, mostly mice, in biomedicine, where mouse models have become instrumental for the current understanding of how most of our genes work and greatly facilitated the progress in the post-genomic era. However, in spite of mice being widely used in Biomedicine to model human diseases, often mice fail to accurately reproduce the features associated with a given human pathology. Therefore there is an urgent need to develop non-rodent animal models that would mimic aspects of human anatomy and human physiology more closely. Pigs, small ruminants and rabbits appear to be excellent candidates to follow up the preliminary discoveries made in mice, and they are the main purpose of the SALAAM initiative, through all the appointed participants, experts in these large animal models. The conference continued for its first day with lectures by A. Aartsma-Rus (NL), and S. Wildhirt (DE), who described examples of use of large animal models for Duchenne muscular dystrophy and for the development of medical devices, respectively. The initial Ethical perspective on the use of large animals was provided by N. Stingelin (CH). This first day concluded with an interesting key-note lecture by M.M. Mohiuddin (USA) on the recent advances in pig-to-primate cardiac xenotransplantation.

On the second day, the conference presented the very large repertoire of methods and techniques that are currently available for Genetic Tailoring of large animal models. Angelika Schnieke (DE) introduced the state of art for the current genetic engineering of large animals, nicely summarizing many years of techniques and developments that have been successfully applied for the production of large genetically modified animal models. This initial talk was followed by a presentation by Lluis Montoliu (ES) on the use of CRISPR-Cas9 approaches to functionally analyze the role of non-coding genomic sequences, illustrated with some examples tested in mice, depicting the important role of rodents in proof-of-concept type of experiments, before undertaking subsequent experiments in larger animal models. B. Grzeskowiak (PL) presented an innovative set of nanomagnetic gene delivery vectors for transgenesis. Two additional talks illustrated the power of genetic engineering of the pig genome, using transposons (W.A. Kues, DE) or very elaborated gene cassettes for regulating and tracing disease genes (J.E. Jakobsen, DK). The session ended with a presentation from goats, where L. Boulanger (FR) reported the role of FOXL2 as a female sex-determining gene.

The SALAAM conference continued with a session devoted to systematic phenotyping initiatives of large animal models. At first, H. Fuchs (DE), presented the experience and phenotyping pipeline of the German Mouse Clinic, operating within the Infrafrontier consortium, and a good example of successful systematic phenotyping in mice. Next, Pascale Chavatte-Palmer (FR) discussed the achievements and challenges of imaging techniques in large animal models, through her studies on reproduction and fetal development. J. Tibau (ES) presented his interesting studies using pigs to analyze human obesity and to validate the effect of diets on the evolution of fat deposition using tomography approaches. A. Blutke (DE) introduced the impressive Munich MIDY-PIG Biobank initiative, as a unique resource for translational diabetes research. The two last talks presented the use of pigs as models for respiratory infections (K. Skovgaard, DK) or cystic fibrosis (I. Caballero, FR).

The last standard session of this SALAAM conference was devoted to discuss how to select the best animal model. This session began with an interesting presentation by J. Langermans (NL), who shared their initiative of non-human primate biobanking for translational medicine, a collaborative consortium where most of the nonhuman primate research centres in Europe were represented. He also discussed the unique features of non-human primates to investigate devastating diseases affecting us, such as the new infections (i.e. Ebola) or neurodegenerative diseases (i.e. Alzheimer, Parkinson) , often very challenging to be reproduced in non-primate animal models. Next, Antonio Gonzalez-Bulnes (ES) discussed the advantages and challenges of using pigs and sheep animal models, whereas L. Hiripi (HU) presented the unique features of the rabbit models. V. Huygelen (BE) discussed the use of piglets to investigate the human low birth weight cases , and A. Navarrete Santos (DE) further presented rabbits as ideal models for investigating diabetes during pregnancy. Diabetes research was also the focus of the last speaker of the session, G. Pennarossa (IT), whose experimental dessigns are focused on the use of dogs to explore cell therapy-based treatments.

The SALAAM first public conference ended with an excellent and very motivating talk by Karin Blumer (CH) on the ethical aspects of using large animals. She challenged the audience with the question whether “size did matter?” when it comes to Ethics and Animal Models. Her presentation nicely illustrated the different Ethical perspectives existing in the field and, most importantly, the relevant parameters that should be taken into account in order to properly address this question. She presented the “size” of an animal as an accidental attribute, not an intrinsic value, that must not determine its moral status. This presentation triggered an interesting and live discussion among the participants.

On the third and last day, the different working groups of SALAAM gathered first independently to discuss the next initiatives and eventually shared their conclusions in a combined general session. The planned initiatives will include the organization of practical workshops on CRISPR-Cas9 and transposon technologies, the generation of specific pig Cre-transgenic lines for the production of conditional pig mutant animal models, the need to standardize phenotyping protocols associated with additional specific training courses, the preparation of biobanks and associated databases for archiving and sharing tissues from large animal models, and the creation of a group to analyze the implementation of the 2010/63/EU Directive across Europe, the public perception and ethical issues of animal research, and the need for training to adequately communicate results to the public.

Information about future plans, initiatives and activities of the SALAAM EU-COST action will be available from its dedicated web site.

TT2014 meeting report published in Transgenic Research

TT2014 meeting report published in Transgenic Research
TT2014 meeting report published in Transgenic Research

The meeting report of the 12th Transgenic Technology meeting (TT2014), held in Edinburgh on October 6-8, 2014, and organized by Douglas Strathdee, Peter Hohenstein and Bruce Whitelaw, has just been published in the scientific journal Transgenic Research.

TT2014 meeting report on the 12th Transgenic Technology meeting in Edinburgh: new era of transgenic technologies with programmable nucleases in the foreground.
Beck IM, Sedlacek R.
Transgenic Res. 2015 Feb;24(1):179-83.

The TT2014 meeting report has been written by Inken Beck and Radislav Sedlacek (Czech Centre for Phenogenomics, Institute of Molecular Genetics, Prague, Czech Republic), who will be responsible to organize the next (13th) Transgenic Technology meeting (TT2016) in Prague on March 20-23, 2016.

Welcome to Edinburgh, the city hosting the TT2014 meeting!

Welcome to Edinburgh, the city hosting the TT2014 meeting!
Welcome to Edinburgh, the city hosting the TT2014 meeting!

The 12th Transgenic Technology Meeting is about to begin this forthcoming weekend. On Sunday, 5 October, the Organizers have nicely prepared a welcome pre-meeting dinner to get together and meet all colleagues attending. The real TT2014 meeting‘s kick off will be on Monday morning, 6 October. During the following three days all delegates will have the pleasure (and the privilege, owing the great interest triggered by this conference, absolutely sold out) to listen and discuss the latest advances in transgenic technologies, through lectures delivered by the key players in our field, the ones that have developed or contributed to disseminate the use of the newest tools, the most updated experimental strategies applied to generate and analyze genetically modified animals. More than 530 participants will fill the Assembly Rooms in the historic city of Edinburgh. This TT meeting has become not only the most popular ISTT conference organized to date but also the TT meeting where the highest number of posters (176) will be shown. Therefore, besides enjoying the talks, all TT2014 delegates will have a unique opportunity to browse through the work of dozens of many other laboratories and facilities, willing to share their advances, problems encountered, solutions found and innovative proposals.

The International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) is proud to have chosen Edinburgh as the venue for TT2014 and, hence, wants to congratulate the Organizing Team, led by Douglas Strathdee, Chair of the conference, along with Peter Hohenstein and Bruce Whitelaw, co-chairs, the technical secretariat provided by In-Conference and the rest of members of the Organizing committees, for having prepared what surely will be another great TT meeting, as all precedent meetings were. The TT2014 meeting will be followed by a practical workshop on Zebrafish Transgenic Techniques, where a limited number of participants will have the opportunity to meet experts in the field and learn the basic techniques applied nowadays to use this vertebrate as an alternative animal model to study gene function or disease.

If you are already in Edinburgh, enjoy the city! If you are travelling to Edinburgh: have a safe trip! If, however, and unfortunately, you have not managed to attend this time, but you are a member of the ISTT, please wait to grasp some of the excellence and talent that will be presented during next week through the talks that we will be at the members-only area, after obtaining the consent from the corresponding speakers. Also, life goes on, and ISTT is already planning for the next TT meeting, already launched: the 13th Transgenic Technology Meeting (TT2016) that will be held in Prague (Czech Republic) in March 2016, organized by Radislav Sedlacek.

See you all soon in Edinburgh!


Mouse Genetics. Methods and Protocols (2014)

Mouse Genetics. Methods and Protocols (2014)
Mouse Genetics. Methods and Protocols (2014)

This is yet another interesting book in our field that has been published this year, 2014. This manual, entitled “Mouse Genetics. Methods and Protocols“, edited by Shree Ram Singh and Vinzenzo Coppola, in association with the Publisher, Humana Press/Springer, contains a collection of useful protocols covering most of the methods that can be currently applied for the genetic modification of the mouse genome. According to its presentation at the Springer web page, this book “provides selected mouse genetic techniques and their application in modeling varieties of human diseases. The chapters are mainly focused on the generation of different transgenic mice to accomplish the manipulation of genes of interest, tracing cell lineages, and modeling human diseases. (…) Each chapter contains a brief introduction, a list of necessary materials, systematic, readily reproducible methods, and a notes section, which shares tips on troubleshooting in order to avoid known pitfalls.

The table of contents of this book illustrates the variety of highly sophysticated methods, beyond standard techniques, that are discussed here in detail, around mouse genetics, including: pronuclear injection-based targeted transgenesis through Cre-loxP specific recombination, the use of recombinase-mediated cassette exchange (RMCE) strategies, several approaches for preparing and analyzing conditional mutant alleles using tamoxifen-dependent Cre recombinases, the use of ICSI for the generation of transgenic mice, the use of BACs, mosaic analysis with double markers (MADM) in mice, transposon-mediated transgenesis, overexpression of microRNAs using Rosa26-mediated recombination, the isolation of various somatic and pluripotent cells, the generation of transgenic mice through spermatogonial stem cells in vivo, and, several illustrative examples of how different mouse engineered animal models are best suited to study a variety of human diseases. Hence, this book is also complementary to other recently published manuals, since it contains a careful detailed description of new methods that are not been covered in other similar titles in the field.

The editors of this book, Shree Ram Singh and Vinzenzo Coppola, have counted with the generous expertise shared and provided by a very large list of co-authors, including some ISTT members: Masato Ohtsuka, Kazuhito Sakamoto, Channabasavaiah B. Gurumurthy, Kay-Uwe Wagner, Petra Kraus, V. Sivakamasundari, Xing Xing, Thomas Lufkin, Anton J.M. Roebroek, Bart Van Gool, Kun-Hsiung Lee, Susanne Feil, Jana Krauss, Martin Thunemann, Robert Feil, Pedro N. Moreira, Lluis Montoliu, Jane Beil, Thorsten Buch, Sheng Ding, Tian Xu, Xiaohui Wu, Hui Zong, Claudia Piovan, Foued Amari, Francesca Lovat, Qun Chen, Olga Simmons, Esther M. Bolanis, Jian Wang, Simon J. Conway, Kanika Jain, Paul J. Verma, Jun Liu, Pollyanna Agnes Goh, Michael D. Williams, Wilson Wong, Amanda Rixon, Sarang N. Satoor, Anandwardhan A. Hardikar, Mugdha V. Joglekar, Andrei M. Vacaru, Joseph Vitale, Johnathan Nieves, Margaret H. Baron, Kristbjorn Orri Gudmundsson, Kevin Oakley, Yufen Han, Yang Du, Lalit Sehgal, Abul Usmani, Sorab N. Dalal, Subeer S. Majumdar, Spencer W. Luebben, Naoko Shima, Tsuyoshi Kawabata, Robert M. Hoffman, Viive M. Howell, Emily K. Colvin, Vishalakshi Chavali, Shyam Sundar Nandi, Paras Kumar Mishra, Julia Lorenz, Susanne Grässel, Ganesan Ramesh, Punithavathi Ranganathan, Santhakumar Manicassamy, Indumathi Manoharan, Deepak P. Patil, Holly D. Kristensen and Yogesh Shouche.

This new book will be added to the collection of Springer books published on animal transgenesis and animal genetics for which ISTT members are entitled to a 33% discount, as one of the many benefits associated with the ISTT membership.



Transgenic Animal Technology. A Laboratory Handbook (3rd edition, 2014)

Transgenic Animal Technology. A Laboratory Handbook (3rd edition, 2014)
Transgenic Animal Technology. A Laboratory Handbook (3rd edition, 2014)

Twenty years after the publication of the first edition and twelve years after the release of the second edition of this book, Carl A. Pinkert (Auburn University, College of Veterinary Medicine, Auburn, AL, USA) in association with Elsevier, releases now the third edition of his famous transgenic manual: “Transgenic Animal Technology. A Laboratory Handbook. 3rd edition, 2014“. As it will be familiar to readers of the two previous editions of this useful and unique handbook, this is not only a manual to understand how to make a transgenic mouse. This handbook looks beyond mice and it contains protocols to prepare a wide variety of genetically-modified animals, including: rats, rabbits, poultry, fish, pigs, ruminants and non-human primates. In addition, this compilation of helpful methods includes a number of chapters devoted to understand and improve all steps of transgenesis, from vector design, analysis of transgene integration and the evaluation of transgene expression. Finally, the book also includes cryopreservation methods, an embryo culture section, a review of standard nomenclature and a selection of databases and internet resources currently available in the field.

This handbook is a worth addition to any library, laboratory or transgenic facility, complementary to other available manuals on the subject, but unique in the sense that it exquisitely illustrates current transgenic methods that can be applied to a wide variety of animal species, beyond mice.

Carl A. Pinkert has been helped in his outstanding Editorial task by a large group of co-authors, experts in their subjects, including some ISTT members: Satoshi Akagi, Anna V. Anagnostopoulos, Benjamin P. Beaton, Cory F. Brayton, Steve Brown, Anthony W.S. Chan, Tom Doetschman, Rex A. Dunham, David A. Dunn, Janan T. Eppig, Almudena Fernandez, Tatiana Flisikowska, Vasiliy Galat, Robert A. Godke, Philip Iannaccone, Michael H. Irwin, Larry W. Johnson, Yoko Kato, Teoan Kim, Alexander Kind, Bon Chul Koo, Mo Sun Kwon, Daniel J. Ledbetter, Michael J. Martin, Kazutsugu Matsukawa, Colin McKerlie, Lluis Montoliu, Paul E. Mozdziak, Akira Onishi, Paul A. Overbeek, James N. Petitte, L. Philip Sanford, Jorge A. Piedrahita, Wendy K. Pogozelski, H. Greg Polites, Edmund B. Rucker III, Marina Sansinena, Angelika Schnieke, Kumiko Takeda, James A. Thomson, Ian A. Trounce, Yukio Tsunoda, Cristina Vicente-Garcia, Kevin D. Wells, Richard N. Winn and Curtis R. Youngs.

Manipulating the Mouse Embryo. A Laboratory Manual (4th edition, 2014)

Manipulating the Mouse Embryo. A Laboratory Manual (4th edition, 2014)
Manipulating the Mouse Embryo. A Laboratory Manual (4th edition, 2014)

A bit more than 10 years later, from the last edition (3rd, 2003) published, the classical manual, the “Bible” in our field has been renewed, updated, upgraded and recently published in its fourth edition. The new “Manipulating the Mouse Embryo. A Laboratory Manual. 4th edition, 2014” has just been released, published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press and edited by Richard Behringer, Marina Gertsenstein, Kristina Vintersten Nagy and Andras Nagy. The editors, the same team that produced the 3rd edition of this useful manual, should be praised once again for a brilliant work done, accommodating the latest techniques in mouse embryo manipulation, while not forgetting the traditional procedures that must be learnt properly by anyone joining this field of animal transgenesis for the first time. The editors counted with the help of many additional collaborators, who provided materials and protocols, including many ISTT members, as Marina and Andras are, such as: Wojtek Auerbach, Ralph Brinster, Jorge Cabezas, Tracy Caroll, Lluis Montoliu, Naomi Nakagata, Jan Parker-Thornburg, Shirley Pease and Thomas Saunders, just to name a few of the many colleagues that shared their expertise and contributed to this 4th edition of the CSHLP manual.

This fourth edition is dedicated to Anne McLaren (1927-2007), one of the brave and gifted pioneer in mouse genetics and embriology, and whom do we all owe a number of standard procedures that we routinely apply in a transgenic laboratory, such as mouse embryo culturing, pseudopregnancy and embryo transfer.

The structure of this 4th edition manual follows that of the 3rd edition, in the sense that chapters and methods are grouped logically and functionally, from a very good summary on mouse genetics and mouse embryo development, to mouse colony management, and followed by a variety of main sections dealing with in vitro and in vivo work, surgical procedures, the production of transgenic mice by pronuclear microinjection, derivation of ES cell lines, using ES cells to generate germline-transmitting chimeras, genotyping protocols, parthenogenesis and nuclear transfer, assisted reproduction techniques, cryopreservation methods, techniques for visualizing gene products and finishing by a chapter devoted to setting up a micromanipulation laboratory and the usual and convenient appendix with receipts for the common buffers and solutions.

Besides this excellent updated version of the CSHLP Mouse Manual, there are several books published on this subject, including the ISTT manual (Springer, 2011) edited by Shirley Pease and Thomas Saunders, and all are worth reading and having them around for consultation, since each one brings their own contribution, their view and their solutions for the adequate learning of how to best manipulate animal embryos, and not all methods and protocols are covered in a single book, hence they are largely complementary. I will be soon reporting in this ISTT blog about additional books recently published in this field.


TT2014 abstracts: submission deadline is approaching (30 June)

TT2014 abstracts: submission deadline is approaching (30 June)
TT2014 abstracts: submission deadline is approaching (30 June)

From the International Society for Transgenic Technologies (ISTT) we warmly invite and encourage you all to submit your most recent and exciting results and developments in animal transgenesis to be presented at the forthcoming 12th Transgenic Technology (TT2014) meeting, which will be held in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK, on 6-8 October 2014. Deadline for submitting abstracts for the TT2014 meeting is June 30.
To submit an abstract please visit this TT2014 meeting web page.

All TT2014 participants are encouraged to submit their work as an abstract for poster presentation at the TT2014 meeting. Authors are requested to submit an abstract with the following requirements:

  • Title (max. 25 words)
  • Name authors and affiliations (first author is the presenting author).
  • Text of the communication (max. 400 words).
  • Abstracts should be submitted no later than June 30, 2014.

Accepted abstracts will be published in the scientific journal Transgenic Research (Springer), to which the ISTT is associated.

Posters will be on display in the exhibition area throughout the duration of the meeting. Poster boards are 1.00m wide x 2.00m high and we recommend posters do not exceed 1.50m in length. A supply of Velcro tabs will be available at the venue. No screws or double-sided adhesive tape will be allowed due to the damage they can cause to the boards.

Best Poster Awards
All posters presented at the TT2014 meeting will be eligible for one of the ISTT Best Poster Awards, generously sponsored by Charles River, Inc.

Oral Presentations
A limited number of abstract submissions will be selected and invited to present their findings in the form of a short oral presentation within the main meeting program. Should you be interested in being considered to speak at the meeting please select the appropriate option when submitting your abstract.

Abstracts are invited on all aspects of Transgenic Technologies, including the conference themes as listed below:

  • New technologies in animal transgenesis
  • Embryo stem cells
  • Target nucleases or Editing nucleases (ZFNs, TALENs, CRISPRs)
  • Large-scale phenotyping
  • Animal Biotechnology
  • Imaging with transgenic animals
  • Mouse models of human disease
  • Zebrafish models of human disease and transgenesis
  • Animal ethics and welfare

We are looking forward to receiving your exciting works to discuss the latest development on animal transgenesis!. See you all in Edinburgh!

The TT2014-associated Zebrafish Transgenesis Workshop: 8-10 October 2014 in Edinburgh

The TT2014-associated Zebrafish Transgenesis Workshop: 8-10 October 2014 in Edinburgh
The TT2014-associated Zebrafish Transgenesis Workshop: 8-10 October 2014 in Edinburgh

Immediately after the 12th Transgenic Technology (TT2014) meeting, a unique hands-on zebrafish transgenesis workshop will be taking place in Edinburgh, on October 8-10, 2014. This will be the first non-rodent hands-on transgenic workshop ever organized after a TT meeting. This workshop is offered to willing participants registered to attend the TT2014 meeting (October 6-8, 2014). Registration is handled separately and, at first, intended participants should submit their expression of interest to Organizers. Please note that attendance at this meeting is limited to 20 participants only. Due also to high demand for places, there is a selection process in place for all applicants wishing to attend the workshop. Applications should be sent, along with proof of registration to the following email address: by June 30, 2014. Decisions on the successful applicants will be communicated by July 15, 2014.

The zebrafish is fast becoming a very significant vertebrate animal model system in scientific research; highlighted by the exponential increase in zebrafish-related publications. The role of zebrafish in science is only going to increase in the future; techniques are being constantly developed and more and more people recognise its advantages and benefits to research.

This small freshwater, tropical fish has some clear and unique advantages as a model system; these include its optical transparency, with ex-utero synchronous and rapid development, which allows direct, and continuous in-vivo observation. Genetic and pharmacological manipulation is relatively straight forward and the zebrafish is able to regenerate all organs and tissues. The fish can be maintained under very economic conditions and can be obtained in significant numbers, allowing statistically high N values. Another major advantage is that the developing zebrafish can survive for several days without a cardiovascular system, allowing examination of embryonic-lethal genotypes and phenotypes, from the single-cell stage. Whilst the zebrafish may lack certain (and some obvious) mammalian organs, and despite being physically very different, there are very important genetic and cellular similarities, with development being directly comparable to humans.

The workshop ‘An Introduction to Zebrafish Transgenesis’ follows TT2014 and is the first practical workshop in a non-rodent model species. The practical sessions will start with gene expression interference using classical morpholino microinjection on Day 1, which is complemented on Day 2 with microinjection of a simple fluorescent transgene construct. The scheduled embryology sessions are separated by a wide-ranging series of talks from leading experts in aquatic transgenics. Both the tutorials and practical instruction will provide all the information needed to perform husbandry and gene manipulation in the early zebrafish embryo. Topics include: husbandry best practise, microinjection principles, transgenesis and mutagenesis using recombinases, imaging and cryopreservation.

Appointed teachers and instructors for this zebrafish workshop include: Liz Patton, Carl Tucker, Koichi Kawakami, Stephen Ekker, Keith Joung, Henry Roehl, Robert Kelsh, Martin Denvir, David Lyons, Dirk Seiger, Yi Feng and Karthikeyani Paranthaman.

If you are interested to learn how to work with this alternative vertebrate animal model do not miss this extraordinary opportunity to become familar with basic zebrafish transgenesis techniques and register your interest to attend this hands-on workshop, associated with the TT2014 meeting.