, Volume 21, Issue 1-2, pp 97-108

A polydactylous strain of mice

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A highly inbred strain ofMus musculus is described in which 12% of the males and 18% of the females are polydactylous. This polydactyly is the only abnormality occurring in these mice. In most cases only the first digit (big toe) of the right hind foot is more or less duplicated, but the left foot and other toes may also be affected. Abnormal fathers transmit the peculiarity more often to their daughters than to their sons. This fact cannot be explained on a genetic basis, since for various reasons genetic differences between these mice cannot be assumed to exist. In general, polydactylous mice have an excess number of motor neurons innervating the foot in the spinal cord on the abnormal side. This may be the cause for polydactyly as is known to be inAmphibia.