Identification of a gene responsible for light fur pigmentation in the Norway rat
Czech Republic (IFMSA CZ) - Charles University, 1st Medical Faculty, Prague
Institute of Biology and Medical Genetics, First Faculty of Medicine, Charles University in Prague
prof. Ondřej Šeda, M.D., Ph.D
assoc. prof. Frantisek Liska, M.D., Ph.D.
4 weeks
Cities/Months Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Augt Sep Oct Nov Dec
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Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
A mutation causing light fur pigmentation with normal eye pigmentation ("diluted") was described in the rat decades ago. We set out to identify the molecular basis of the phenotype. Preliminary results of linkage mapping indicated that the diluted gene is localized in proximity of Tyrosinase locus on chromosome 1. What is the aim of the project? 1) To construct a fine linkage map of the locus to determine the exact location of the mutant gene. This can confirm Tyrosinase as the candidate gene. 2) If Tyrosinase is confirmed, test the gene for mutations in coding sequence and differential expression in the diluted skin compared to wild-type. What techniques and methods will be used? polymerase chain reaction (PCR), RT-PCR, real-time RT-PCR, gel electrophoresis
What is the aim of the project?
What techniques and methods are used?
What is the role of the student?
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
General awareness about laboratory work and the techniques used. Reasonable level of dexterity (e.g. with a pipette).
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement

Type of students accepted
This project accepts:
- Medical students
- Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Sturm RA. Molecular genetics of human pigmentation diversity. Hum Mol Genet. 2009 Apr 15;18(R1):R9-17.
- Mort RL et al. The melanocyte lineage in development and disease. Development. 2015 Feb 15;142(4):620-32.
- Liska F et al. Deletion of a conserved noncoding sequence in Plzf intron leads to Plzf down-regulation in limb bud and polydactyly in the rat. Dev Dyn. 2009 Mar;238(3):673-84