To isolate a variety of rat cell lines with differentiated functions, we developed transgenic rat lines that ubiquitously express the temperature-sensitive large T-antigen gene of the simian virus 40 (SV40) tsA58 mutant under the control of the SV40 large T-antigen promoter. These rats might be advantageous for simultaneously establishing cell lines from different tissues of rats with the same genetic origin. The transgenic rat lines transmit a functional copy of the transgene and were bred with sib mating to generate the homozygous transgene. The established cell lines from this transgenic rat had temperature dependent growth and retained some of the differentiated functions of each particular tissue, and were useful as a ready source of novel conditionally immortalized cell lines. The possible use and perspectives of these transgenic cell lines are discussed.
To evaluate the phenotypic variation within a commercial outbred mouse stock, we examined sleep-time (or duration of loss of righting reflex) of outbred ICR mice after i.p. injection of ethanol (4.0 g/kg of body weight), urethane (1.3 g), tribromoethanol (250 mg), and pentobarbital (60 mg), and after i.v. injection of propofol (30 mg). We observed high-grade individual differences in sleep-time that ranged from 0 to 179 min, 83.1 ± 4.3 (mean and SEM of 100 mice) for ethanol; 0 to 169 min, 64.5 ± 3.1 for pentobarbital; 0 to 160 min, 36.6 ± 3.6 for urethane; 0 to 120 min, 21.5 ± 2.2 for tribromoethanol; and 3 to 20.5 min, 7.1 ± 0.3 for propofol. This extensive phenotypic variance within the outbred stock was as great as the variation reported among inbred strains or selected lines, and the varied susceptibility within the colony was inherited by Jcl:ICR-derived inbred strains IAI, ICT, IPI, and IQI. The range of sleep-time variance for ethanol, pentobarbital, urethane, tribromoethanol, and propofol within four-way cross hybrid Jcl:MCH(ICR) mice was 86.6%, 63.3%, 124%, 61.0%, and 53.1% that of outbred Jcl:ICR mice, respectively. The present study indicates that phenotypic variance within an outbred Jcl:ICR stock was at high risk for susceptibility to the drugs that depress the central nervous system and that Jcl:ICR-derived inbreds may be an excellent source of animal models for studying the anesthesia gene.
Obesity is a risk factor triggering a variety of metabolic diseases. Cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) exhibit spontaneous onset of obesity in adulthood, similar to such onset exhibited by humans. To clarify the characteristics accompanying obesity in female cynomolgus monkeys, we used simple and multiple regression analyses to determine the relationship between body weight and hematological and serum biochemical parameters as well as obesity-related hormones, namely, leptin and insulin. Simple regression analysis showed that body weight was significantly (P<0.05) correlated with leptin level, insulin level, hemoglobin concentration, hematocrit values, mean corpuscular volume, glucose concentration, and triglyceride concentration. In addition, a multiple regression model containing leptin level, insulin level, mean corpuscular volume, and red blood cell count explained 66.9% of the variance in body weight. Therefore, female cynomolgus monkeys show similar obesity characteristics to humans, i.e., obesity is associated with enhanced synthesis and excretion of leptin in adipocytes, high risk of diabetes mellitus, and high levels of hematocytes. Our results indicate that female cynomolgus monkeys are good models for studying obesity in humans.
The chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes, Patr) is the closest zoological living relative of humans and shares approximately 98.6% genetic homology to human beigns. Although major histocompatibility complex (MHC) plays a critical role in T cell-mediated immune responses in vertebrates, the information on Patr MHC remains at a relatively poor level. Therefore, we attempted to isolate Patr MHC class II genes and determine their nucleotide sequences. The cDNAs encoding Patr MHC class II DP, DQ and DR β chains were isolated from the cDNA library of a chimpanzee B lymphocyte cell line Bch261. As a result of screening, the clone 6-3-1 as a representative of Patr DP clone, clone 30-1 as a Patr DQ clone, and clones 4-7-1 and 55-1 having different sequences as Patr DR clones were detected. The clone 6-3-1 consisted of 1, 062 nucleotides including an open reading frame (ORF) of 777 bp. In the same way, clone 30-1 consisted of 1, 172 nucleotides including ORF of 786 bp, clones 4-7-1 and 55-1 consisted of 1, 163 nucleotides including ORF of 801 bp. Except for five nucleotide changes, clones 4-7-1 and 55-1 were the same sequence. By comparison with the nucleotide sequences already reported on chimpanzee MHC class II β1 genes, clones 6-3-1, 30-1, 4-7-1 and 55-1 were classified as PatrDPB1*16, PatrDQB1*0302, PatrDRB1*0201 and PatrDRB1*0204, respectively. This is the first report to describe complete cDNA sequences of Patr DP and DQ molecules. The nucleotide sequence data of Patr MHC class II genes obtained in this study will be useful for the genotyping of Patr MHC class II genes in individual chimpanzees.
The effects of liquid storage at 15°C on the fertilizing ability of miniature pig semen were investigated. Characterization of ejaculated semen from 3 miniature boars was carried out. Semen volume and pH were similar among these boars. In one of the boars, sperm motility was slightly low, and sperm concentration and total number of sperm were significantly lower than in the others (P<0.01). Seminal plasma of the semen was substituted with various extenders (Kiev, Androhep, BTS and Modena) by centrifugation and semen was stored for 7 days at 15°C. Sperm motility was estimated daily at 37°C. For complete substitution of seminal plasma, Modena was significantly more efficient than the other extenders (P<0.001) in retaining sperm motility. Semen from each of the 3 miniature boars that had been stored for 5 to 7 days at 15°C in Modena was used for artificial insemination of 15 miniature sows. The farrowing rates were 100, 100 and 60%, and litter sizes were 6.4±1.5, 5.8±0.8 and 5.0±1.0 for each boar semen, respectively. The boar that sired the smallest farrowing rate was the same one that showed lower seminal quality with respect to sperm motility, sperm concentration and total number of sperm. These results suggest that miniature boar semen can be stored for at least 5 days at 15°C by the substitution of seminal plasma with Modena extender.
Body-tremorous rats were found in a colony of WTC-tm rats and a new coisogenic mutant strain void of the tm mutation was established. Histological analysis revealed that these rat mutants had abnormal vacuoles in the red nucleus of the midbrain, the reticular formation in the brain stem, and the white matter of the cerebellum and spinal cord. Electron microscopic observation showed many irregular myelin-bound vacuoles and degenerated oligodendroglia. Genetic analysis indicated that the presence of the abnormal vacuoles in the central nervous system (CNS) is controlled by a recessive gene named “vacuole formation (vf)” on chromosome (Chr) 8, and that this gene is also involved in the appearance of body tremors. Comparative maps suggested that the mouse and human orthologs would be located on Chr 9 (43-48 cM) and Chr 6 (328-370 cR3000), respectively. Since similar mutations have not been mapped yet around these regions, the authors believe this novel rat mutation will allow the discovery of a new function of these particular genes that is involved in the development and maintenance of the CNS.
In order to identify indicators of the preferences for bedding materials, the paper bedding material preferences of laboratory mice were investigated in the present study. Four cages, each containing a different structure of paper bedding material were connected to allow free access to each cage. The preferences for paper bedding materials of laboratory mice were judged by the differences in the length of stay and sleep in each cage. The mice preferred the bedding material that allowed them to easily hide and build nests and was soft. We conclude that the comfort and well-being of laboratory mice can be increased through the appropriate selection of bedding material.
The levels of total and 2-mercaptoethanol (2-ME)-resistant antibodies in male Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus) to sheep red blood cells (SRBC) were higher than those in male C57BL/6 mice after the first and second immunizations. On the other hand, the total antibody level to Brucella abortus (BA) in gerbils was comparable to that in mice, whereas 2-ME-resistant antibody titers were lower after the first and second immunizations than in mice. After injection of 8×104 SRBC, male gerbils did not produce either total or 2-ME-resistant antibodies after the first immunization, but they produced total and 2-ME-resistant antibodies after the first to the fourth immunizations with different dilutions of BA, and both types of antibody titers significantly increased with the repeated immunizations. There were no sex differences in total and 2-ME-resistant antibody production to SRBC.
A spontaneous mutant was established in the ICR mouse strain. The affected mice became hyperactive at about 7 days of age, and then showed circling behavior. The body weight decreased significantly 2 weeks after birth, and developmental defects were revealed in the middle ear, cochlea, cochlear nerve, and semicircular canal areas. The mutation was inherited by an autosomal single recessive gene and is referred to as cir.
To describe the transmission pattern of natural infection with Ebola Reston (EBO-R) virus in a breeding colony, the chronological and spatial analysis of mortality during the 1996 EBO-R virus outbreak was done in this study. The EBO-R virus infection among monkeys in the facility was widespread. Over a period of 3 months, 14 out of 21 occupied units were contaminated with antigen positive animals. A large number of wild-caught monkeys were involved in this outbreak suggesting that wild-caught monkeys have a high susceptibility to EBO-R virus infection. In this outbreak, morbidity patterns for individual animal units were very different regardless of the type and size of cages, individual or gang cages. The results suggest that not only the cage size but also poor animal husbandry practices may be risk factors for the spread of EBO-R infection.
A novel and simple assay system using a 96-well ELISA plate was established for measuring serum oxytocin in cynomolgus monkeys. This method omits the centrifuge for B/F separation because the second anti-rabbit IgG antibody-coated ELISA plate can easily separate the first anti-oxytocin rabbit antibody-bound radiolabeled oxytocin. Since this method has the advantage of omitting B/F separation, it becomes possible to measure a large number of samples with simple steps. In addition, accurate and reproducible results could be obtained by this method. The optimal reaction condition made it possible to measure more than 8 pg/ml of serum oxytocin. The changes of serum oxytocin level in relation to the first delivery was determined in a total of 11 female monkeys who were divided into two groups, infant-accepting mothers (4 monkeys) and infant-rejecting ones (7 monkeys). The serum oxytocin levels of pre-delivery (one to 4 days before delivery) and post-delivery (within 12 hr after delivery) in infant-accepting mothers were 33.6 ± 4.57 and 43.5 ± 16.4 pg/ml, respectively. Those in infant-rejecting mothers were 39.0 ± 9.6 and 31.4 ± 7.0 pg/ml. Two-way ANOVA (accepting/rejecting × pre/post) revealed a significant interaction of two factors (F (1, 9)= 5.39, p<0.05). This result implies the possibility of a different pattern of oxytocin secretion between infant-accepting and infant-rejecting mothers during parturation.
The purpose of this study was to determine whether species differences in neonatal vocalizations of rodent pups could be observed. Ultrasonic vocalizations of pups of 5 rodent species, mouse (ICR), vole (Microtus arvalis), Syrian hamster, rat (Wistar-Imamichi), and Mongolian gerbil were recorded from 3 to 15 or 21 days of age. Recordings were made under conditions of separation from mothers and litter mates in a cooled chamber (approximately 10°C). The major species differences observed were age specific and species specific frequencies. The Mongolian gerbil displayed a different frequency change with age. Namely, the day on which ultrasonic vocalizations ceased was delayed in Mongolian gerbil compared with the other rodents. The model peak frequencies of ultrasound emitted from pups at 3 days of age were low (around 35 kHz) in the vole and the Syrian hamster, medium (around 45kHz) in the rat and the Mongolian gerbil, and high (around 55 kHz) in the mouse.
KK mice and KK-Ay mice were examined for age related changes in blood and urinary biophysiological parameters. Blood hemoglobin A1c levels were significantly higher in KK-Ay and KK mice as compared to non-diabetic ddY mice. In both diabetic mice, especially KK-Ay mice, plasma insulin levels markedly increased at 2 to 4 months of age, and the urinary glucose and microalbumin levels and albumin-to-creatinine ratios increased dependent on age. Plasma thrombomodulin levels significantly increased at 2 to 4 months of age in both KK and KK-Ay mice. Mild enlargement of mesengial matrix and segmental proliferative glomerular nephritis were revealed in KK and KK-Ay mice, respectively, at 4 months of age. KK-Ay mice with insulin resistance and high urine mAlb level might be useful as models for the early stage of diabetic nephropathy.
The present investigations were performed to assess the differences among rat colonies commonly used for neurophysiological research regarding the development of complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA)-induced arthritis. Inflammatory signs including edema in the paw fluctuated remarkably among individual Wistar (Slc/Wistar/ST) and Sprague-Dawley (Slc/SD) rats, while the inflammatory signs of Lewis (LEW/Crj) rats appeared earlier and was severer and more consistent than Slc/Wistar/ST and Slc/SD rats. Edema in the hind paw developed in 100% of LEW/Crj rats with the lowest dose of CFA (0.6 mg/rat) used as compared with 64% of Slc/Wistar/ST (CFA 1 mg/rat) and 38% of Slc/SD rats (CFA 1.2 mg/rat). Retardation of weight gain was observed in Slc/Wistar/ST and Slc/SD rats in contrast to a severe weight decrease in inflamed LEW/Crj rats after the development of arthritis.
Germ-free (GF) mice are highly susceptible to dextran sodium sulfate (DSS)-induced colitis in comparison to conventionalized (CVz) mice. It is hypothesized that degradation of DSS by intestinal microflora is involved in the susceptibility to DSS-induced colitis of GF mice. This study evaluates the ability of bacteria in mouse cecal contents (CC) to degrade DSS in vitro, and provides confirmatory evidence that DSS was not degraded when incubated with CC. Our results suggest that intestinal microflora do not contribute directly to the difference in susceptibility of GF mice to DSS-induced colitis through degradation.
In BALB/c mice infected with Trichinella spiralis, changes in body temperature (Tb) were observed over 35 days after the infection. T. spiralis infection induced hypothermia two times at 7 and 28 days after infection. The initial decrease persisted for about one week with a peak (37.1±0.62°C) around 10 days after the infection, while the later phase persisted for at least one week. Both 10 and 35 days after the infection, there were remarkable decreases in Tb. The serum glucose level of infected mice at 10 days was significantly (p<0.01) decreased compared with that of control mice at the same number of days, while the level in infected mice at 35 days was not decreased. Moreover, the later phase of hypothermia was prevented by the cyclooxygenase inhibitor indomethacin (10 mg/kg i.p.), while the initial phase was not. We conclude that hypothermia was caused by two different mechanisms, involving the effects of hypoglycemia and prostaglandins.