The Knockout Mouse
A powerful tool for precision medicine.
The goal of the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium (IMPC) is to discover functional insight for every gene by generating and systematically phenotyping 20,000 knockout mouse strains.
One of the most important tools at our scientific disposal in understanding mammalian gene function is the laboratory mouse. The fundamental genetic similarity between mice and humans allows researchers to infer a human gene's function based on studies with laboratory mice. One powerful technique is to turn off, or "knockout", the activity of a mouse gene to assess what biological systems are impacted. This gives insights how a similar gene in humans may contribute to disease when its activity is altered.
The IMPC is generating a knockout mouse strain for every protein coding gene by using the embryonic stem cell resource generated by the International Knockout Mouse Consortium (IKMC). The production of mouse strains from these ES cells are tracked within the "international Micro-injection tracking system" (iMits) and are made available to the research community via public repositories.
Systematic broad-based phenotyping is performed by each IMPC center using standardized procedures found within the International Mouse Phenotyping Resource of Standardised Screens (IMPReSS) resource. Gene-to-phenotype associations are made by a versioned statistical analysis with all data freely available by this web portal and by several data download features.