Scientific reports

TALEN-mediated homologous recombination in Daphnia magna.

PMID 26674741


Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nucleases (TALENs) offer versatile tools to engineer endogenous genomic loci in various organisms. We established a homologous recombination (HR)-based knock-in using TALEN in the crustacean Daphnia magna, a model for ecological and toxicological genomics. We constructed TALENs and designed the 67 bp donor insert targeting a point deletion in the eyeless mutant that shows eye deformities. Co-injection of the TALEN mRNA with donor DNA into eggs led to the precise integration of the donor insert in the germ line, which recovered eye deformities in offspring. The frequency of HR events in the germ line was 2% by using both plasmid and single strand oligo DNA with 1.5 kb and 80 nt homology to the target. Deficiency of ligase 4 involved in non-homologous end joining repair did not increase the HR efficiency. Our data represent efficient HR-based knock-in by TALENs in D. magna, which is a promising tool to understand Daphnia gene functions.