Department of Horticultural Biotechnology, Kyunghee University1
Insertional mutagenesis induced by T-DNA or transposon tagging offers possibilities for analysis of gene function. However, its potential remains limited unless good methods for detecting the target locus are developed. We describe a PCR technique for efficient identification of DNA sequences adjacent to the inserted T-DNA in a higher plant, Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa ssp. pekinensis). This strategy, which we named variable argument thermal asymmetric interlaced PCR (VA-TAIL PCR), was designed by modifying a single-step annealing-extension PCR by including a touch-up PCR protocol and using long gene-specific primers. Amplification efficiency of this PCR program was significantly increased by employing an autosegment extension method and linked sequence strategy in nested long gene-specific primers. For this technique, arbitrary degenerate (AD) primers specific to B. rapa were designed by analyzing the Integr8 proteome database. These primers showed higher accuracy and utility in the identification of flanking DNA sequences from individual transgenic Chinese cabbages in a large T-DNA inserted population. The VA-TAIL PCR method described in this study allows the identification of DNA regions flanking known DNA fragments. This method has potential biotechnological applications, being highly suitable for identification of target genomic loci in insertional mutagenesis screens.
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