Chromosomal Assignment of Quantitative Trait Loci Influencing Modified Hole Board Behavior in Laboratory Mice using Consomic Strains, with Special Reference to Anxiety-related Behavior and Mouse Chromosome 19
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Male mice from a panel of chromosome substitution strains (CSS, also called consomic strains or lines)—in which a single full-length chromosome from the A/J inbred strain has been transferred onto the genetic background of the C57BL/6J inbred strain—and the parental strains were examined in the modified hole board test. This behavioral test allows to assess for a variety of different motivational systems in parallel (i.e. anxiety, risk assessment, exploration, memory, locomotion, and arousal). Such an approach is essential for behavioral characterization since the motivational system of interest is strongly influenced by other behavioral systems. Both univariate and bivariate analyses, as well as a factor analysis, were performed. The C57BL/6J and A/J mouse parental inbred strains differed in all motivational systems. The chromosome substitution strain survey indicated that nearly all mouse chromosomes (with the exception of chromosome 2) each contain at least one quantitative trait locus (QTL) that is involved in modified hole board behavior. The results agreed well with previous reports of QTLs for anxiety-related behavior using the A/J and C57BL/6J as parental strains. The present study confirmed that mouse chromosomes 5, 8, 10, 15, 18 and 19 likely contain at least one anxiety QTL. There was also evidence for a novel anxiety QTL on the Y chromosome. With respect to anxiety-related avoidance behavior towards an unprotected area, we have special interest for mouse chromosome 19. CSS-19 (C57BL/6J-Chr19A/NaJ) differed in avoidance behavior from the C57BL/6J, but not in locomotion. Thus pleiotropic contribution of locomotion could be excluded.