Behavior Genetics

, Volume 28, Issue 3, pp 227–237 | Cite as

Artificial Selection for Increased Wheel-Running Behavior in House Mice

  • John G. Swallow
  • Patrick A. Carter
  • Theodore GarlandJr.


Replicated within-family selection for increased voluntary wheel running in outbred house mice (Mus domesticus; Hsd:ICR strain) was applied with four high-selected and four control lines (10 families/line). Mice were housed individually with access to activity wheels for a period of 6 days, and selection was based on the mean number of revolutions run on days 5 and 6. Prior to selection, heritabilities of mean revolutions run per day (rev/day), average running velocity (rpm), and number of minutes during which any activity occurred (min/day) were estimated by midparent–offspring regression. Heritabilities were 0.18, 0.28, and 0.14, respectively; the estimate for min/day did not differ significantly from zero. Ten generations of selection for increased rev/day resulted in an average 75% increase in activity in the four selected lines, as compared with control lines. Realized heritability averaged 0.19 (range, 0.12–0.24 for the high-activity lines), or 0.28 when adjusted for within-family selection. Rev/day increased mainly through changes in rpm rather than min/day. These lines will be studied for correlated responses in exercise physiology capacities and will be made available to other researchers on request.

Artificial selection correlated response genetic correlation heritability Mus domesticus wheel-running activity 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • John G. Swallow
    • 1
  • Patrick A. Carter
    • 1
  • Theodore GarlandJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ZoologyUniversity of WisconsinMadison

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