Article

Nature 425, 917-925 (30 October 2003) | doi:10.1038/nature02033; Received 1 June 2003; Accepted 8 September 2003

A gene expression atlas of the central nervous system based on bacterial artificial chromosomes

Shiaoching Gong1, Chen Zheng1, Martin L. Doughty1, Kasia Losos1, Nicholas Didkovsky2, Uta B. Schambra4, Norma J. Nowak5, Alexandra Joyner6, Gabrielle Leblanc7, Mary E. Hatten2 & Nathaniel Heintz3

  1. GENSAT Project, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, Box 260, New York 10021, USA
  2. Laboratory of Developmental Neurobiology Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, Box 260, New York 10021, USA
  3. Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, Box 260, New York 10021, USA
  4. Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, East Tennessee State University, Tennessee 37614, USA
  5. Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, New York 14263, USA
  6. Developmental Genetics Program, Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine, Department of Cell Biology, New York University School of Medicine and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, New York 10016, USA
  7. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, NIH, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA

Correspondence to: Mary E. Hatten2Nathaniel Heintz3 Correspondence and requests for materials should be addressed to N.H. or M.H. (Email: gensat@rockefeller.edu). Expression data and annotations are available at http://www.gensat.org/.

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The mammalian central nervous system (CNS) contains a remarkable array of neural cells, each with a complex pattern of connections that together generate perceptions and higher brain functions. Here we describe a large-scale screen to create an atlas of CNS gene expression at the cellular level, and to provide a library of verified bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) vectors and transgenic mouse lines that offer experimental access to CNS regions, cell classes and pathways. We illustrate the use of this atlas to derive novel insights into gene function in neural cells, and into principal steps of CNS development. The atlas, library of BAC vectors and BAC transgenic mice generated in this screen provide a rich resource that allows a broad array of investigations not previously available to the neuroscience community.