Breaking species barriers by “breeding” mice in a dish

How species differ from each other is a key question in biology. But genetic mapping between species has been challenging because hybrid crosses are typically sterile. Combining latest stem cell and genomic techniques, MPI scientists at the Friedrich Miescher Laboratory, Tübingen, Germany have pioneered in vitro recombination, a technique to circumvent breeding and directly cause gene exchanges in cells. In this way they have mapped differences between mouse species within weeks and created mouse embryos carrying hybrid mosaic genomes, without breeding any live mice. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)