Zinc Transporter-3 Knockout Mouse

Introduction The presence of histochemically reactive zinc within synaptic vesicles defines a subset of neurons that have been termed zinc-enriched (ZEN) neurons. Because ZEN neurons are prevalent throughout the limbic system and zinc is capable at physiological concentrations of exerting neuromodulatory effects on receptors thought to be involved in learning and memory, synaptically released zinc has been considered to play an important role in memory formation. Zinc transporter, ZnT3 is a defining feature of ZEN neurons in the brain and spinal cord. ZnT3 resides on the membranes of zinc-rich synaptic vesicles, where it is essential for the accumulation of zinc within synaptic vesicles Technology description Dr Palmiter’s laboratory has generated single and double ZnT3 knockout mice with mixed
(C57Bl/6×129/SvEv) genetic background by homologous recombination in AB1 embryonic stem cells. Mice with only one normal ZnT3 allele (ZnT3+/−) have reduced amounts of synaptic vesicle zinc, and mice homozygous for the deletion (ZnT3−/−) contain no histochemically-detectable zinc within synaptic vesicles. These mice represent the ideal system for investigating the roles of synaptic vesicle zinc, because they exhibit normal brain morphology and the lesion is very specific; i.e., (1) the zinc that is bound to protein is still present and (2) histochemically-reactive zinc in organs outside of the central nervous system is unaffected by the removal of ZnT3. Related Publication(s)
Brain Research 891(1-2): 253-265, 2001. Proc Natl Acad Sci 96(4): 1716-1721, 1999.

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