Effects of 3,3′-Iminodipropionitrile on Hair Cell Numbers in Cristae of CBA/CaJ and C57BL/6J Mice

  • Brent A. Wilkerson
  • Filippo Artoni
  • Colby Lea
  • Kayla Ritchie
  • Catherine A. Ray
  • Olivia Bermingham-McDonogh
Research Article


This study examines absolute hair cell numbers in the cristae of C57BL/6J mice and CBA/CaJ mice from weaning to adulthood as well as the dose required for 3,3′-iminodiproprionitrile (IDPN)-injury of the cristae in C57BL/6J mice and CBA/CaJ mice, the two mouse strains most commonly used by inner ear researchers. In cristae of CBA/CaJ and C57BL/6J mice, no loss of hair cells was observed up to 24 weeks. In both strains, dose-dependent loss of hair cells was observed 7 days after IDPN treatment of 2-month-old mice (IC50 = 16.1 mmol/kg in C57BL/6J mice vs. 25.21 mmol/kg in CBA/CaJ mice). Four-month-old C57BL/6J mice exposed to IDPN developed dose-dependent vestibular dysfunction as indicated by increased activity and circling behavior in open field tests and by failure to swim 7 days after treatment. IDPN-hair cell injury in C57BL/6J mice and CBA/CaJ mice represents a fast and predictable experimental model for the study of vestibular degeneration and a platform for the testing of vestibular therapies.


hair cell vestibular IDPN mouse toxicity cristae 



Special thanks to Dr. Amber Slowik for her contributions to this work, Dr. Lisa Cunningham for commenting on an earlier version, Dr. Thomas Reh for critical comments, and Dr. Sherri Jones for sharing data prior to publication.

Funding information

This work was supported by NIDCD grants R21DC010862 (OBM), F32DC016480, and T32DC005361 (BAW).


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Copyright information

© Association for Research in Otolaryngology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biological StructureUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Stem Cells and Regenerative MedicineUniversity of WashingtonWashingtonUSA

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