Dedicated Mouse Production and Husbandry

  • Lucie Vizor
  • Sara Wells
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 561)


The complexity of mammalian biology, in combination with the ability to manipulate the embryonic genome in mice, has provided specific challenges in terms of mouse breeding, analysis, and husbandry. From the initial planning stage of a project involving the generation of novel, genetically altered mice, it is important to consider a number of potential issues involving the successful establishment and propagation of a transgenic line.

Key words

Background strain Congenic Inbred Viability Fertility Phenotypic analysis Welfare assessment Breeding calculations Husbandry 


  1. Hedrich, H. J. and Bullock, G. R. (2004) The Laboratory Mouse. Academic, New York.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Festing, M. F. and Fisher, E. M. (2000) Mighty mice. Nature, 404, 815.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Scholar
  4. 4.
    Festing, M. F. (1994) Reduction of animal use: experimental design and quality of experiments. Lab Anim, 28, 212–221.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    van Wilgenburg, H., van Schaick Zillesen, P. G. and Krulichova, I. (2003) Sample Power and ExpDesign: tools for improving design of animal experiments. Lab Anim (NY), 32, 39–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Linder, C. C. (2006) Genetic variables that influence phenotype. ILAR J, 47, 132–140.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Jacobson, L. H. and Cryan, J. F. (2007) Feeling strained? Influence of genetic background on depression-related behaviour in mice: a review. Behav Genet, 37, 171–213.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Papaioannou, V. E. and Behringer, R. R. (2005) Mouse phenotypes: a handbook of mutation analysis. Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbour.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Taketo, M., Schroeder, A. C., Mobraaten, L. E., Gunning, K. B., Hanten, G., Fox, R. R., Roderick, T. H., Stewart, C. L., Lilly, F., Hansen, C. T., et al (1991) FVB/N: an inbred mouse strain preferable for transgenic analyses. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 88, 2065–2069.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Keskintepe, L., Norris, K., Pacholczyk, G., Dederscheck, S. M. and Eroglu, A. (2007) Derivation and comparison of C57BL/6 embryonic stem cells to a widely used 129 embryonic stem cell line. Transgenic Res, 16, 751–758.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Auerbach, A. B., Norinsky, R., Ho, W., Losos, K., Guo, Q., Chatterjee, S. and Joyner, A. L. (2003) Strain-dependent differences in the efficiency of transgenic mouse production. Transgenic Res, 12, 59–69.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mineur, Y. S. and Crusio, W. E. (2002) Behavioral and neuroanatomical characterization of FVB/N inbred mice. Brain Res Bull, 57, 41–47.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Bothe, G. W. M., Bolivar, V. J., Vedder, M. J. and Geistfeld, J. G. (2004) Genetic and behavioural differences among five inbred mouse strains commonly used in the production of transgenic and knockout mice. Genes Brain Behav, 3, 149–157.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Auerbach, W., Dunmore, J. H., Fairchild-Huntress, V., Fang, Q.Auerbach, A. B., Huszar, D. and Joyner, A. L. (2000) Establishment and chimera analysis of 129/SvEv- and C57BL/6-derived mouse embryonic stem cell lines. Biotechniques, 29, 1024–1028, 1030, 1032.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Estill, S. J., Fay, K. and Garcia, J. A. (2001) Statistical parameters in behavioral tasks and implications for sample size of C57BL/6J:129S6/SvEvTac mixed strain mice. Transgenic Res, 10, 157–175.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Visscher, P. M., Haley, C. S. and Thompson, R. (1996) Marker-assisted introgression in backcross breeding programs. Genetics, 144, 1923–1932.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Brown, D. G., Willington, M. A., Findlay, I. and Muggleton-Harris, A. L. (1992) Criteria that optimize the potential of murine embryonic stem cells for in vitro and in vivo developmental studies. In Vitro Cell Dev Biol, 28A, 773–778.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Lui, X., Wu, H., Loring, J., Hormuzdi, S., Disteche, C. M., Bornstein, P. and Jaenisch, R. (1997) Trisomy eight in ES cells is a common potential problem in gene targeting and interferes with germ line transmission. Dev Dyn, 209, 85–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Nadeau, J. H. (2001) Modifier genes in mice and humans. Nat Genet Rev, 2, 165–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Bridges, J. P. and Weaver, T. (2006) Use of transgenic mice to study lung morphologenesis and function. ILAR J, 47, 22–31.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Nicholson, S. J., Witherden, A. S., Hafezparast, M., Martin, J. E. and Fisher, E. M. (2000) Mice, the motor system, and human motor neuron pathology. Mamm Genome, 11, 1041–1052.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Festing, M. F. W. and Altman, D. G. (2002) Guidelines for the design and statistical analysis of experiments using laboratory animals. ILAR J, 43, 244–258.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Scholar
  24. Scholar
  25. 25.
    Wang, M.-H. and Vom Saal, F. S. (2000) Maternal age and traits in offspring. Nature, 407, 469–470.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Jennings, M., Batchelor, G. R., Brain, P. F., Dick, A., Elliot, H., Francis, R. J., Hubrecht, R. C., Hurst, J. L., Morton, D. B., Peters, A. G., Raymond, R., Sales, G. D., Sherwin, C. M. and West, C. (1998) Refining rodent husbandry: the mouse. Lab Anim, 32, 233–259.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Guide for the care and use of laboratory animals (1996) Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources, Commission on Life Sciences National Research Council, National Academy, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Van de Weerd, H. A., Van Loo, P. L. and Baumans, V. (2004) Environmental enrichment: room for reduction? Altern Lab Anim, 32, 69–71.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Bazille, P. G., Walden, S. D., Koniar, B. L. and Gunther, R. (2001) Commercial cotton nesting material as a predisposing factor for conjunctivitis in athymic nude mice. Lab Anim, 30, 40–42.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Olsson, I. A. and Dahlborn, K. (2002) Improving housing conditions for laboratory mice: a review of “environmental enrichment”. Lab Anim, 36, 243–270.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Balcombe, J. P., Barnard, N. D. and Sandusky, C. (2004) Laboratory routines cause animal stress. Contemp Top Lab Anim Sci, 43, 42–51.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Threadgill, D. W., Dlugosz, A. A., Hansen, L. A., Tennenbaum, T., Lichti, U., Yee, D., LaMantia, C., Mourton, T., Herrup, K., Harris, R. C., et al (1995) Targeted disruption of mouse EGF receptor: effect of genetic background on mutant phenotype. Science, 269, 230–234.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Sibilia, M. and Wagner, E. F. (1995) Strain-dependent epithelial defects in mice lacking the EGF receptor. Science,, 269, 909.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Aihara, K., Azuma, H., Akaike, M., Ikeda, Y., Sata, M., Takamori, N., Yagi, S., Iwase, T., Sumitomo, Y., Kawano, H., Yamada, T., Fukuda, T., Matsumoto, T., Sekine, K., Sato, T., Nakamichi, Y., Yamamoto, Y., Yoshimura, K., Watanabe, T., Nakamura, T., Oomizu, A., Tsukada, M., Hayashi, H., Sudo, T., Kato, S., and Matsumoto, T. (2007) Strain-dependent embryonic lethality and exaggerated vascular remodeling in heparin cofactor II-deficient mice. J Clin Invest, 117, 1514–1526.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Baribault, H., Penner, J., Iozzo, R. V. and Wilson-Heiner, M. (1994) Colorectal hyperplasia and inflammation in keratin 8-deficient FVB/N mice. Genes Dev, 8, 2964–2973.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Tucci, V., Lad, H. V., Parker, A., Polley, S., Brown, S. D. M. and Nolan, P. M. (2006) Gene-environmental interactions differentially affect mouse strain behavioural parameters. Mamm Genome, 17, 1113–1120.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Spires, T. L. and Hannan, A. J. (2004) Nature, nurture and neurology: gene-environmental interactions in neurodegenerative disease. FEBS J, 272, 2347–2361.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Haemisch, A., Voss, T. and Gärtner, K. (1994) Effects of environmental enrichment on aggressive behavior, dominance hierarchies, and endocrine states in male DBA/2J mice. Physiol Behav, 56, 1041–1048.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Humana Press, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lucie Vizor
    • 1
  • Sara Wells
    • 1
  1. 1.Medical Research CouncilHarwellUK

Personalised recommendations