Mouse Genome Engineering Core


The CRI Mouse Genome Engineering Core Facility is committed to helping researchers produce mouse models to support fundamental and translational research, providing transgenic, gene targeting and other services. Established in 2014, the facility serves scientists at CRI, UT Southwestern and other institutes.

The Mouse Genome Engineering Core Facility performs DNA microinjection services, CRISPR/Cas9 microinjection services, ES cell manipulation and other microinjection services to generate transgenic mice, knock-in/knock-out mice and chimeric mice harboring select genetic mutations. Other services include mouse sperm cryopreservation and recovery, in vitro fertilization (IVF), rederivation of pathogen free mouse lines and derivation of mouse embryonic stem cell lines.

Our staff provides general consultations on experimental designs and vectors for gene modification-related projects, DNA preparation, recombinant ES clones, mouse genotyping, colony breeding and husbandry. We can also customize services as requested to support the development of animal models for modeling human diseases.

Our Services

To request services, please log into PPMS, and order the desired service. Once you have submitted your request with a valid subledger and the facility has accepted it, please arrange to drop off your DNA or other materials to NL12.110C with Yu Zhang.

Generation of genetically modified mouse for biomedical research:
  • CRISPR/Cas9 services
  • Embryonic stem (ES) cell gene targeting services
  • Transgenic mouse services
Colony management services:

The Mouse Genome Engineering Core Facility offers a variety of cost-effective colony management solutions that provide clients with flexibility in the management of their rodent colonies.

Our colony management service offerings include:

  • Breeding
  • Sperm cryopreservation
  • Cryorecovery
  • Rederivation
  • IVF
  • Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)

For custom services request, please email Dr. Hao Zhu.

We operate in a state-of-the-art high barrier facility that is fully accredited by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International (AAALAC International). This UTSW Animal facility is maintained at the highest of animal health standards to ensure production and maintenance of animals certified free of specific pathogens and viruses.

For a detailed description of our services and policies please email Nicolas Loof.


Intracytoplasmic morphologically selected sperm injection (IMSI) and ICSI require a high level of skill and careful manipulation under a microscope. An important determining factor in the success of these procedures is the performance of the microscope and manipulator. We use the Olympus IX73, which delivers superior optical performance and an ideal working environment.

Additional equipment includes:

  • Humidified CO2 incubator
  • Dissecting microscopes
  • Horizontal pipet puller
  • Needle grinder
  • Nitrogen storage tank


Dr. Hao Zhu and Nicolas Loof are responsible for the facility’s overall operation. Yu Zhang is the lead scientist in the facility and has over 10 years of mouse engineering experience.

Yu Zhang

Senior Research Associate

Hao Zhu, M.D.

Assistant Professor, CRI

Nicolas Loof, M.S.

CRI research shared facilities manager

Tripti Sharma, Ph.D.

Research Associate