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Table 2 Comparison of available rat mutagenesis techniques

From: Rat traps: filling the toolbox for manipulating the rat genome

Technique Targeted or random Advantages Disadvantages
ENU mutagenesis target-selected mutagenesis Random High mutation efficiency Mutation discovery is relatively laborious
   Easily scalable Background mutations
   Allows for allelic series  
Transposon-tagged mutagenesis Random Gene insertions easily detectable by reporter gene cassettes Relatively low mutation efficiency
   Integration site easy to identify Biased genomic integration pattern
ZFN-mediated gene targeting Targeted Allows gene targeting by NHEJ and theoretically allows homologous recombination Modular assembly of zinc-finger arrays is relatively unsuccessful
   High efficiency in introducing DSBs Commercial ZFNs are expensive
Homologous recombination in ES or iPS cells Targeted Enables targeted knockouts, knock-ins and conditional alleles Homologous recombination has still not been shown in rat ES and iPS cells
  1. ENU, N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea; ES, embryonic stem; iPS, induced pluripotent stem; ZFN, zinc-finger nuclease; NHEJ, nonhomologous end joining; DSBs, double-strand breaks.