Gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurones located within the brain are the final neuroendocrine output regulating the reproductive hormone axis. Their small number and scattered distribution in the hypothalamus make them particularly difficult to study in vivo. The Cre/loxP system is a valuable tool to delete genes in specific cells and tissues. We report the production of two mouse lines that express the CRE bacteriophage recombinase in a GnRH-specific manner. The first line, the GnRH-CRE mouse, contains a transgene in which CRE is under the control of the murine GnRH promoter and targets CRE expression specifically to GnRH neurones in the hypothalamus. The second line, the GnRH-CRETeR mouse, uses the same murine GnRH promoter to target CRE expression to GnRH neurones, but is modified to be constitutively repressed by a tetracycline repressor (TetR) expressed from a downstream tetracycline repressor gene engineered within the transgene. GnRH neurone-specific CRE expression can therefore be induced by treatment with doxycycline which relieves repression by TetR. These GnRH-CRE and GnRH-CRETeR mice can be used to study the function of genes expressed specifically in GnRH neurones. The GnRH-CRETeR mouse can be used to study genes that may have distinct roles in reproductive physiology during the various developmental stages.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- CRE recombinase
- Transgenic mouse