• ascidian;
  • transgenesis;
  • I-SceI;
  • Tc1/mariner;
  • transposase


The enhancer trap approach utilizing transposons yields us information about gene functions and gene expression patterns. In the ascidian Ciona intestinalis, transposon-based transgenesis and insertional mutagenesis were achieved with a Tc1/mariner transposon Minos. We report development of a novel technique for enhancer trap in C. intestinalis. This technique uses remobilization of Minos in the Ciona genome. A Minos vector for enhancer trap was constructed and a tandem array insertion of the vector was introduced into the Ciona genome to create a mutator line. Minos was remobilized in Ciona chromosomes to create new insertions by providing transposases. These transposase-introduced animals were crossed with wild-type animals. Nearly 80% of F1 families showed novel GFP expression patterns. This high-throughput enhancer trap screen will be useful to create new marker transgenic lines showing reporter gene expression in specific tissues and to identify novel patterns of gene expression. genesis 45:307–317, 2007. © 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.