Authentication scheme for routine verification of genetically similar laboratory colonies: a trial with Anopheles gambiae
Published Date:Oct 22 2009
Source:BMC Biotechnol. 2009; 9:91.
When rearing morphologically indistinguishable laboratory strains concurrently, the threat of unintentional genetic contamination is constant. Avoidance of accidental mixing of strains is difficult due to the use of common equipment, technician error, or the possibility of self relocation by adult mosquitoes ("free fliers"). In many cases, laboratory strains are difficult to distinguish because of morphological and genetic similarity, especially when laboratory colonies are isolates of certain traits from the same parental strain, such as eye color mutants, individuals with certain chromosomal arrangements or high levels of insecticide resistance. Thus, proving genetic integrity could seem incredibly time-consuming or impossible. On the other hand, lacking proof of genetically isolated laboratory strains could question the validity of research results.
We present a method for establishing authentication matrices to routinely distinguish and confirm that laboratory strains have not become physically or genetically mixed through contamination events in the laboratory. We show a specific example with application to Anopheles gambiae sensu stricto strains at the Malaria Research and Reference Reagent Resource Center. This authentication matrix is essentially a series of tests yielding a strain-specific combination of results.
These matrix-based methodologies are useful for several mosquito and insect populations but must be specifically tailored and altered for each laboratory based on the potential contaminants available at any given time. The desired resulting authentication plan would utilize the least amount of routine effort possible while ensuring the integrity of the strains.
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