|Function and cDNA Resources Section
DOE Human Genome Program Contractor-Grantee
102. The Tennessee Mouse Genome Consortium
D. K. Johnson1, D. R. Miller1, J. Snoddy1, B. A. Berven1, and E. M. Rinchik1,2
1Life Sciences Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, P.O. Box 2009, Oak Ridge, TN 37831-8077 and 2Department of Biochemistry, Cellular, and Molecular Biology, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996
In order to maximize our capabilities for screening mice for a wide variety of mutant phenotypes, we have joined with institutions across the state of Tennessee to form the Tennessee Mouse Genome Consortium (TMGC). Our goal is to combine and exploit the clinical and academic expertise resident at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt University, the University of Memphis, St. Jude's Children's Hospital, and Meharry Medical College to induce and analyze genetic mutations that alter development, behavior, biochemistry, and morphology in mice. Each institution has confirmed its commitment to the goals of the Consortium by signing a Memorandum of Cooperation, by agreeing to a set of scientific, administrative, and veterinary principles governing institutional interactions, and by providing start-up funding for investigators to develop analytical methods and tools that can contribute to TMGC research projects.
In addition to the broad-based screening supported by state-wide expertise in many fields, the factors that distinguish the TMGC are ORNL's unique history in mouse genetics/mutagenesis and in the design of genetic screens, as well as ORNL's strength in bioinformatics and computational biology. Our genetics strategy is designed to produce multiple mice that may express new recessive mutations in a visually-identifiable "test class", which permits multi-site screening, screening for innately variable phenotypes, and screening in an aged, test-class colony.
Pilot screens for mutations in the central nervous system have currently identified fifteen potential mutants in about 450 pedigrees screened from mutagenesis experiments targeting two regions of mouse chromosome 7 (see abstract by Rinchik, et al.). The infrastructure provided by the TMGC provides a basis for the pooling of our expertise in joint proposals to federal and non-federal sponsors for long-range support for this unified, large-scale effort to develop mouse models as community resources for human genetics research.
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