The domestic ferret, Mustela putorius furo, is an important mammalian animal model to study human respiratory infection. However, insufficient genomic annotation hampers detailed studies of ferret T cell responses. In this study, we analyzed the published T cell receptor beta (TRB) locus and performed high-throughput sequencing (HTS) of peripheral blood of four healthy adult ferrets to identify expressed V, D, J, and C genes. The HTS data is used as a guide to manually curate the expressed V, D, J, and C genes. The ferret locus appears to be most similar to that of the dog. Like other mammalian TRB loci, the ferret TRB locus contains a library of variable genes located upstream of two D-J-C gene clusters, followed by a (in the ferret non-functional) V gene with an inverted transcriptional orientation. All TRB genes (expressed or not) reported here have been approved by the IMGT/WHO-IUIS nomenclature committee.

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Department of Virology

Gerritsen, B. (Bram), Pandit, A. (Aridaman), Zaaraoui-Boutahar, F., van den hout, M., van IJcken, W., de Boer, R., & Andeweg, A. (2019). Characterization of the ferret TRB locus guided by V, D, J, and C gene expression analysis. Immunogenetics. doi:10.1007/s00251-019-01142-9