A Method for Rapid Determination of Male Mouse Genotypes and Transmission Distortion by Breeding with Estrous Females

  • A. E. Miller Baker
Conference paper
Part of the Current Topics in Microbiology and Immunology book series (CT MICROBIOLOGY, volume 127)


To assess the frequency of haplotypes at the t complex of loci and their transmission distortion in natural populations of the house mouse (Mus domesticus) with minimal disruption to the social organization, it is important to use a technique by which males can be brought into the laboratory, bred to tester females (T/+), and then returned to their site of capture. It would be desirable if males could be returned to the field within 24 hrs of being captured. Older methods typically require a period of male retention of several weeks, but this could compromise conclusions of behavioral ecological studies. For example, the t complex of loci in house mice is frequently referred to in marshalling evidence for group selection (Lewontin 1970; Lacy 1978). Yet the removal of males from the population for a period of weeks alters the mating system and territorial structure and could severely disrupt the spatial and temporal dynamics of alleles at the t complex. A new method uses DNA from a 1 cm biopsy of the tail to assess the t haplotype with a specific DNA probe (Silver, et al. 1984). Whether the tail biopsy influences sexual or parental behavior is unknown, but seems unlikely.


House Mouse Conception Rate Estrous Female Transmission Ratio Distortion Territorial Structure 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin · Heidelberg 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. E. Miller Baker

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