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Keywords:

  • knockout;
  • Cre;
  • KOMP;
  • FaceBase

Abstract

The mouse, as a genetically defined and easily manipulated model organism, has played a critical role in unraveling the mechanisms of craniofacial development and dysmorphology. While numerous gene knockout strains that display craniofacial abnormalities and essential recombinase tool strains with craniofacial-specific expression have been generated, many are absent from public repositories. Large-scale, international resource-generating initiatives promise to address this concern, providing a comprehensive set of targeted mutations and a suite of new Cre driver strains. In addition, panels of genetically defined strains provide tools to dissect the multigenic, complex nature of craniofacial development, adding to the foundation of information gained from single gene studies. Continued progress will require awareness and access to these essential mouse resources. In this review, current mouse resources, large-scale efforts, and potential future directions will be outlined and discussed. genesis 49:190–199, 2011. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.