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Keywords:

  • DNA;
  • Gene integration;
  • Molluscs;
  • Nucleus;
  • Spermatozoon;
  • Transfection

Abstract

Spermatozoa from the bivalve molluscs Mytilus galloprovincialis, Mytilus chilensis and Chamelea gallina were transfected in vitro using the p-GeneGrip construct, which encodes green fluorescent protein. The efficiency of transfection after brief incubation was assessed by fluorescence and confocal laser microscopy, and was about 58.5–70.01% in the species used. The foreign gene was principally located in the sperm nuclei, as demonstrated by laser confocal serial sections. In some spermatozoa, mitochondria, which are grouped in the base of the nucleus, also appeared to be transfected. Polymerase chain reaction and Southern blot analyses suggested that the foreign DNA had been integrated into the nuclear genome in Mytilus galloprovincialis spermatozoa. This simple method for spermatozoon transfection in molluscs of commercial interest could have biotechnological applications.