ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-151021-2
Intersectional Gene Expression in Zebrafish Using the Split KalTA4 System
Almeida, R.G., Lyons, D.A.
Date: 2015
Source: Zebrafish   12(6): 377-86 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Almeida, Rafael, Lyons, David A.
Keywords: none
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • DNA-Binding Proteins/genetics
  • DNA-Binding Proteins/metabolism*
  • Embryo, Nonmammalian/metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation/physiology*
  • Genes, Reporter
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Plasmids
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • SOXE Transcription Factors/genetics
  • SOXE Transcription Factors/metabolism
  • Trans-Activators/metabolism
  • Transcription Factors/genetics
  • Transcription Factors/metabolism*
  • Zebrafish/genetics
  • Zebrafish/metabolism*
  • Zebrafish Proteins/genetics
  • Zebrafish Proteins/metabolism*
PubMed: 26485616 Full text @ Zebrafish
In this study, we describe the adaptation of the split Gal4 system for zebrafish. The Gal4-UAS system is widely used for expression of genes-of-interest by crossing driver lines expressing the transcription factor Gal4 (under the control of the promoter of interest) with reporter lines where upstream activating sequence (UAS) repeats (recognized by Gal4) drive expression of the genes-of-interest. In the Split Gal4 system, hemi-drivers separately encode the DNA-binding domain (DBD) and the activation domain (AD) of Gal4. When encoded under two different promoters, only those cells in the intersection of the promoters' expression pattern and in which both promoters are active reconstitute a functional Gal4 and activate expression from a UAS-driven transgene. We split the zebrafish-optimized version of Gal4, KalTA4, and generated a hemi-driver encoding the KalTA4 DBD and a hemi-driver encoding KalTA4's AD. We show that split KalTA4 domains can assemble in vivo and transactivate a UAS reporter transgene and that each hemi-driver alone cannot transactivate the reporter. Also, transactivation can happen in several cell types, with similar efficiency to intact KalTA4. Finally, in transient mosaic expression assays, we show that when hemi-drivers are preceded by two distinct promoters, they restrict the expression of an UAS-driven reporter from a broader pattern (sox10) to its constituent smaller neuronal pattern. The Split KalTA4 system should be useful for expression of genes-of-interest in an intersectional manner, allowing for more refined manipulations of cell populations in zebrafish.