The purpose of this study was to develop a strain of canine X-linked muscular dystrophy (CXMD), a model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, in Japan. A female beagle was artificially inseminated with frozen-thawed spermatozoa derived from an affected golden retriever. Subsequently, two carrier female dogs (G1 carriers) and four normal male littermates were produced. Thereafter, the two G1 carriers were mated with beagle sires. As a result, each bitch whelped three times, and out of 54 pups, 17 affected male descendants, and 11 carrier female descendants (G2 carriers) were detected. One G2 carrier was then mated with a beagle sire and 15 pups in two whelpings were produced, including five affected males and four carrier females (G3 carriers). A total of 10 female beagles were artificially inseminated to evaluate the fertility of the frozen-thawed spermatozoa from the two affected dogs. The whelping rates of the two affected dogs were 4/5 and the litter sizes were 5.0 ± 1.41 and 6.0 ± 0.82, respectively. These results indicate that a canine X-linked muscular dystrophy colony has been established in Japan. We called them CXMDJ.
The primary aim of the present study was to define central and peripheral physiological differences between dietary obesity-susceptible (DOS) and obesity-resistant (DOR) outbred Sprague Dawley (SD) rats when given a moderate high fat diet containing 32.34% of energy as a fat. After a 9-week feeding period, the DOS-SD rats consumed significantly more feed (11.1%) and had higher abdominal (39.9%) and epididymal (27.5%) fat pads than the DOR-SD rats. In addition, serum leptin and insulin levels were significantly increased in the DOS-SD rats compared with those in the DOR-SD rats. However, we did not observe significant differences in serum triglyceride, cholesterol and glucose. No differences in hypothalamic OB-Ra and Rb mRNA expressions were found between the two groups. In contrast, arcuate NPY immunohistochemical expression was much higher in the DOS-SD rats than in the DOR-SD rats, though NPY expression in the supraoptic and paraventricular nuclei was not different between the two phenotypes. In peripheral tissues, the DOS-SD rats showed noticeably increased acetyl CoA carboxylase (ACC) mRNA expression in the liver, not epididymal fat. However, Western blot of peroxisomal proliferator activated factor γ (PPARγ) in the liver and epididymal fat was not different between the two phenotypes of SD rats. It was concluded that different body weight phenotypes within outbred SD population responded differently to the development of dietary induced obesity via altered anabolic features in the hypothalamus and liver.
Leishmania amazonensis recombinants expressing the enhanced green fluorescent protein (egfp) gene or β-galactosidase gene (lacZ) were constructed for drug screening and histopathological analysis. The egfp or lacZ in a leishmanial transfection vector, p6.5, was introduced into L. amazonensis promastigotes, and egfp or lacZ-carrying recombinant L. amazonensis, La/egfp and La/lacZ, respectively, were obtained. Expression of egfp or lacZ in both promastigotes and amastigotes could be clearly visualized by fluorescence microscopy or by light microscopy with 5-bromo-4-chloro-3-indolyl-β-D-galactopyranoside (X-Gal), respectively. Fluorescence signal and β-galactosidase activity measured by a colorimetric reaction with chlorophenol red β-D-galactopyranoside (CPRG) were well correlated to the numbers of these parasites. The inhibitory concentration (IC50) of a leishmanicidal drug, amphotericin B, in L. amazonensis promastigotes measured using La/egfp and La/lacZ was similar to that measured by conventional methods such as cell counting, thymidine incorporation and colorimetric assay. Furthermore, the fluorescence signal and absorbance of CPRG correlated well with the numbers of La/egfp and La/lacZ amastigotes in macrophages, respectively, suggesting La/egfp and La/lacZ can be a convenient and useful tool for drug screening not only in promastigotes, but also in amastigotes of L. amazonensis. La/lacZ collected from mouse tissues four weeks after the parasite infection were stained well with X-Gal. La/lacZ allowed parasite detection at high sensitivity in the tissues of infected mice and will be useful for following infections in macrophages in vivo. Thus, the marker-transfected Leishmania parasites constructed in this study will be useful for analyses of Leishmania parasites, especially at the intracellular stage.
We have developed a cytoplasmic replicating virus vector of Sendai virus (SeV) that infects and replicates in most mammalian cells, including neurons, and directs high-level gene expression. To investigate the protective effect of SeV vector-mediated gene transfer of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) on the delayed neuronal death caused by transient global ischemia in gerbils, SeV vectors carrying either GDNF (SeV/GDNF) or enhanced green fluorescent protein gene (SeV/GFP) were stereotaxically microinjected into the lateral ventricle. Four days after injection, occlusion of the bilateral common carotid arteries for 5 min produced transient global forebrain ischemia. Treatment with SeV/GDNF significantly decreased the delayed neuronal death of the hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons observed 6 days after the operation. TUNEL staining demonstrated that SeV/GDNF treatment markedly reduced the number of apoptotic cells in the hippocampal CA1 neurons, indicating that SeV/GDNF treatment prevented apoptosis. Furthermore, delayed neuronal death on the contralateral side of the hippocampal CA1 was also prevented to a similar extent as that on the ipsilateral side. These results suggest that SeV/GDNF prevents the delayed neuronal death induced by ischemia and is potentially useful for gene therapy for stroke.
ELOVL4, elongation factor of very long chain fatty acids-4, is known to be responsible for autosomal dominant macular degeneration and Stargardt-like macular degeneration. In this study, we cloned the monkey homologue of ELOVL4 and determined the cellular and tissue distribution of the gene product. Sequence analysis of the monkey ELOVL4 gene revealed a high degree of homology between human and monkey. The cloned full-length cDNA of monkey ELOVL4 encoded 314 amino acids, the same length as human and two amino acids longer than mouse. The monkey ELOVL4 conserved the characteristics typical of the super family of ELO enzymes involved in the metabolism of membrane-bound fatty acid elongation. Real-time quantitative PCR demonstrated that the monkey ELOVL4 gene was highly expressed in restricted tissue-specific fashion, not only in the retina but also in the skin (90% of retina) and thymus (111% of retina). Immunohistochemical analysis detected signals predominantly in the photoreceptor layer of the monkey retina.
Obesity is responsible for inducing various metabolic diseases. Laboratory-bred cynomolgus monkeys exhibit spontaneous onset of obesity. However, to date, no blood chemistry index to identify the state of obesity in cynomolgus monkeys has been determined. In the present study, to determine such an index, we measured the serum levels of two adipocyte-derived hormones, leptin and adiponectin, and evaluated the relationship between these hormones and other serum energy metabolic factors (i.e. insulin, total protein, glucose, total cholesterol and triglyceride) as well as the percentage of body fat (%Fat) in mature cynomolgus monkeys. Both in females and males, leptin was positively correlated with insulin and %Fat, and adiponectin was negatively correlated with insulin and %Fat. In female cynomolgus monkeys, leptin, adiponectin, and glucose were selected as the most important determinants for %Fat in multiple regression analysis, and in male cynomolgus monkeys, leptin was selected. The ratio of leptin to adiponectin (L/A ratio) was significantly elevated in the animals with %Fat over 40 (P<0.01). The results indicate that L/A ratio is a potential index for comprehensively identifying obesity in cynomolgus monkeys.
Studies to date have established that the physical environment inside cages can be controlled adequately by setting the intra-cage ventilation at 60 air changes per hour in a forced-air-ventilated micro-isolation system (FVMIS). In this study, the capability of FVMIS to prevent inter-cage transmission of microorganisms was evaluated using Pasteurella pneumotropica as a reference microorganism. One FVMIS rack and a conventional rack were used, and cages with mice positive for P. pneumotropica and those with P. pneumotropica-free mice were housed on both racks. The mice were examined for P. pneumotropica contamination every 4 weeks after initiating the experiment for 12 weeks using a polymerase chain reaction method. Some P. pneumotropica-free mice housed in open air cages in the conventional rack became positive for P. pneumotropica (four of 28 animals after 4 weeks; eight of 28 animals after 12 weeks), but all P. pneumotropica-free mice housed in the FVMIS cages remained negative for the bacterium throughout the experiment. The results demonstrate that FVMIS can prevent inter-cage transmission of P. pneumotropica when proper cage handling practice is under taken.
First, pubertal development of the penile reflexes, e.g., erections, cups and flips in Wistar-Imamichi male rats was investigated following sheath retraction. Second, the penile reflexes and copulatory behavior in the above males were compared between 10 and 44 weeks of age. The penile reflexes in Wistar-Imamichi rats began to appear from day 26, and all males displayed full components of the reflexes on day 47. The occurrence rates and mean numbers of erections, cups and flips in aged adults were significantly low, compared with the young adults. Also, in the observation of copulatory behavior the occurrence rate of ejaculations, and mean numbers of intromissions and ejaculations in aged adults were significantly lower than that in young adults. These results of the present study may suggest that the decrease of copulatory behavior in male rats with age results from the dysfunction of the penile reflexes with age.
The DBA/2Cr mouse is characterized by the presence of giant lysosomes located in the proximal convoluted tubules of males and proximal straight tubules of females. However, it remains unclear whether these giant lysosomes in the proximal tubules are characteristic of DBA/2Cr specifically, or are common to other DBA/2 substrains and DBA/1. The present study investigated the morphology of kidneys from DBA/2CrSlc, DBA/2JJcl, DBA/2NCrj and DBA/1JNCrj mice of both sexes. Giant lysosomes in the renal proximal tubules were found to represent common morphological characteristic of both DBA/2 and DBA/1JN.
Focal disturbed laminar architecture in cerebellar vermis was observed in 25 out of 100 (25%) males, and 25 out of 100 (25%) females of BrlHan: WIST@Jcl rats. The cortical molecular and granular layers were haphazardly distributed around the primary and/or secondary fissures. The stellate and basket cells positively stained with parvalbumin immunohistochemistry were observed exclusively in the separated molecular layer. Purkinje cells were found at the boundary between the molecular and the granular layers. Glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP) immunohistochemistry revealed disarranged fibers of the Bergman glial cells. Based on the incidence of this spontaneous cerebellar lesion, it was presumed to be related to certain genetic factors of this rat strain.
Two inbred strains of the Mongolian gerbil with different phenotypes in seizure behaviour and coat color were newly established. LSAG/Nu has low seizure susceptibility and albino phenotypes, whereas SPBG/Nu has seizure-prone and black coat color phenotypes. LSAG was compared with SPBG as to seizure incidence and grade. Mean ages at seizure onset of LSAG and SPBG were 6 and 3 months, respectively. Seizure incidences in over 9 months old LSAG and SPBG gerbils were 37.3% (66/177) and 95.2% (118/124), respectively. LSAG has a significantly lower incidence (p<0.001) and grade (p<0.001) of seizures than SPBG. Only a few seizing LSAG gerbils exhibited myoclonus to tonic-clonic seizure progression. These results suggest that LSAG has some mechanisms which delay the onset of seizures and prevent them from becoming serious. Both strains of gerbils can be expected to be useful animal models for the study of human idiopathic generalized epilepsy.
The life spans and spontaneous tumors in a total of 1960 Wistar Mishima (WM/MsNrs) rats, inbred strain, from the 80-130th generations were examined. The average life span (mean ± SD) was 731 ± 173 days (n=1053) in the males and 813 ± 214 days (n=907) in the females (p<0.0001). The average life span of tumor-afflicted females was significantly longer than that of the non-tumor group (p<0.0001), while no such difference was observed in males. Tumors were observed in 33 males (3.1%) and 246 females (27.1%). In the males, tumors were often observed under the skin (2.2%). Frequencies of tumors in lung and liver, bones and intestine were less than 0.5%. In the females, incidence of mammary tumor was 20.1%, and various organs such as ovaries, uterus, bones, lung, and liver had tumor incidence frequencies of less than 3.5%. It was concluded that WM/MsNrs rats might be suitable for life span and age-related studies because of their characteristics of length of longevity and the low incidence of spontaneous tumors in both sexes.
The developmental competence of in vitro cultured embryos vitrified-warmed at an early cleavage stage (2- or 4, 8-cell stage) was examined by both direct transfer into recipient animals and after in vitro manipulation for chimeric mice production using embryonic stem (ES) cells. Vitrified-warmed embryos transferred at the morulae and blastocyst stages showed fetus development comparable to control embryos, although blastocyst development of vitrified-warmed embryos was significantly slower than that of controls. When vitrified-warmed early cleavage stage embryos were used for chimeric mouse production using ES cells, 1 to 10% of the injected or aggregated embryos developed into chimeric neonates and germ-line chimeric mice were obtained from all ES cell lines. This study indicates that embryos developed in vitro from vitrified-warmed embryos have equivalent competence with unvitrified embryos irrespective of stage of vitrification and that these vitrified-warmed embryos maintain adequate viability even after in vitro manipulation such as aggregation and microinjection with ES cells.