Genistein is a powerful antioxidant and plays a role in calcium and bone metabolism. We evaluated the efficacy of dietary supplementation with genistein on the nutrient use and mineral concentrations in tibia and serum of quails reared at high environmental temperature (34°C). Two hundred and forty Japanese quails (10 days old) were randomly assigned to 8 treatment groups consisting of 10 replicates of 3 birds. The birds were kept in a temperature-controlled room at 22°C (Thermoneutral, TN groups) or 34°C (for 8 h/d; 09.00 am-05.00 pm; Heat stress, HS groups). Birds were fed either a basal diet (TN and HS) or the basal diet supplemented with 200, 400 or 800 mg of genistein/kg of diet. Heat exposure decreased apparent nutrient digestibility and bone mineralization when the basal diet was fed (P<0.001). Apparent digestibility of dry matter (DM) (P<0.05), crude protein (CP) (P<0.05) and ash (P<0.01) was significantly improved by genistein supplementation. However, this improvement was not in direct proportion to increased doses of supplement since there was no difference when diets included either 400 or 800 mg genistein/kg of diet (P<0.05) in birds reared under heat stress. The amounts of Ca, P, Mg, Mn, Zn, Fe and Cu in the excreta decreased (P<0.01), while Ca, P, Mg, Mn, Zn and Cu concentrations in tibia ash increased in quails reared under heat stress conditions (P<0.01) with genistein supplementation. Ca and P concentrations in tibia ash were also increased in birds kept under thermoneutral conditions with genistein supplementation. Increased serum alkaline phosphatase activity (P<0.01) was associated with increasing dietary genistein in all groups. In conclusion, genistein supplementation to the basal diet improved digestibility of CP, DM and ash and levels of Ca and P and bone mineralization in quails reared under heat stress conditions.
In pharmaceutical companies and research institutes, many toxicity tests are performed with laboratory animals. This study was performed to produce reference data for eye toxicity tests and to investigate the ophthalmic diseases of 408 ICR mice and 119 BALB/c mice, which are commonly used as subjects in toxicity tests. The experimental animals without clinical disorders were selected regardless of sex. The ophthalmic diseases were examined by using special ophthalmic instruments: direct ophthalmoscope, indirect ophthalmoscope, slit-lamp biomicroscope and focal illuminator. The most prevalent ocular variation within normal limits was hyaloid vessel remnant (ICR mice, 28.2%; BALB/c mice, 31.9%) and the incidence gradually decreased with age. The ocular diseases found in ICR mice were retinal degeneration (9.8%), corneal scar (4.2%), focal cataract (2.2%), anisocoria (1.2%), corneal ulcer (0.2%) and uveitis (0.2%). In BALB/c mice, corneal scar (9.2%), focal cataract (1.7%) and corneal ulcer (0.8%) were the ocular diseases found.
Increasing exposure to environmental endocrine disruptor, xeno-estrogen, is a serious hazard to male reproductive activity. To explore possible genetic control in susceptibility to xeno-estrogen, the weight reduction of testes induced by the continuous administration of a synthetic estrogen, diethylstilbesterol, were investigated by quantitative trait analysis in LEXF and FXLE recombinant inbred strain rats, consisting of 21 independent strains, 9 of their substrains, parental F344/Stm and LE/Stm strains, and (F344 × LE)F1. For the weight of testes, one highly significant quantitative trait locus (QTL) and one significant QTL were mapped on chromosomes 7 and 1, respectively. The QTL on chromosome 7 is closely associated with c-myc. Pituitary weight and serum prolactin were also variable among recombinant inbred strains, but no QTL was detected for them in this study.
The small testis (Smt) mutant mouse is characterized by a small testis of one third to one half the size of a normal testis, and its spermatogenesis is mostly arrested at early stages of meiosis, although a small number of spermatocytes at the late prophase of meiosis and a few spermatids can sometimes be seen. We performed quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis of these spermatogenic traits and testis weight using 221 F2 males obtained from a cross between Smt and MOM (Mus musculus molossinus) mice. At the genome-wide 5% level, we detected two QTLs affecting meiosis on chromosomes 4 and 13, and two QTLs for paired testis weight as a percentage of body weight on chromosomes 4 and X. In addition, we found several QTLs for degenerated germ cells and multinuclear giant cells on chromosomes 4, 7 and 13. Interestingly, for cell degeneration, the QTL on chromosome 13 interacted epistatically with the QTL on chromosome 4. These results reveal polygenic participation in the abnormal spermatogenesis and small testis size in the Smt mutant.
The number of diabetic patients is increasing every year, and new model animals are required to study the diverse aspects of this disease. An experimental obese animal model has reportedly been obtained by injecting monosodium glutamate (MSG) to a mouse. We found that ICR-MSG mice on which the same method was used developed glycosuria. Both female and male mice were observed to be obese but had no polyphagia, and were glycosuric by 29 weeks of age, with males having an especially high rate of incidence (70.0%). Their blood concentrations of glucose, insulin, total cholesterol, and triglycerides were higher than in the control mice at 29 weeks. These high concentrations appeared in younger males more often than in females, and were severe in adult males. Also, the mice at 54 weeks of age showed obvious obesity and increased concentrations of glucose, insulin, and total cholesterol in the blood. The pathological study of ICR-MSG female and male mice at 29 weeks of age showed hypertrophy of the pancreatic islet. This was also observed in most of these mice at 54 weeks. It was recognized as a continuation of the condition of diabetes mellitus. From the above results, these mice are considered to be useful as new experimental model animals developing a high rate of obese type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes mellitus without polyphagia.
Nucleotide sequcences of mouse parvovirus (MPV) isolate, named MPV/UT, and mouse minute virus (MMV) were analyzed and used for expressing recombinant proteins in E. coli. ELISA tests using recombinant major capsid protein (rVP2) and recombinant major non-structural protein (rNS1) as antigens were developed and their performance in serologic detection of rodent parvovirus infection was assessed. MPV-rVP2 and MMV-rVP2 ELISAs reacted specifically with anti-MPV and anti-MMV mouse sera, respectively. MMV-rNS1 antigen had a wide reaction range with antisera to rodent parvoviruses including MPV, MMV, Kilham rat virus (KRV) and H-1 virus. All mice oronasally infected with MPV were seropositive at 4 weeks post-infection in screening by ELISAs using MPV-rVP2 and MMV-rNS1 antigens, but were negative by conventional ELISA using whole MMV antigen. A contact transmission experiment revealed that transmission of MPV occurred up to 4 weeks post-infection, and all cage mates were seropositive in screening with MPV-rVP2 and MMV-rNS1 ELISAs. These results indicate that MPV-rVP2 and MMV-rVP2 are specific ELISA antigens which distinguish between MPV and MVM infection, while MMV-rNS1 antigen can be used in generic ELISA for a variety of rodent parvoviruses. The higher sensitivity of MPV-rVP2 ELISA than conventional ELISA for detecting seroconversion to MPV in oronasally infected mice as well as in cage mates suggests the usefulness of MPV-rVP2 ELISA in quarantine and microbiological monitoring of MPV infection in laboratory mice.
Adjuvant-induced arthritic (AIA) rats develop a severe chronic polyarthritis which shares some features in common with human rheumatoid arthritis. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether AIA rats emit ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) when they are confronted with a healthy `stimulus rat' in social interactions. We also examined the effects of three analgesic drugs (piroxicam, rofecoxib and ketoprofen) on USV responses using the same paradigm. In social interactions, AIA rats and intact controls emitted USVs in the 22-28 kHz range. Vocalization activities were significantly higher in AIA rats than those in intact controls. Moreover, the USVs of AIA rats were significantly inhibited by the three analgesic drugs. These results suggest that the USV responses elicited in AIA rats are useful for the evaluation of analgesic drugs.
It was reported that recombinase-A protein (RecA)-coated exogenous DNA was more likely to be integrated into mouse, goat and pig genomes. The objective of this study was to investigate whether integration of exogenous DNA into the rat genome is improved by the recombinase-mediated DNA transfer. Pronuclear microinjection of RecA-coated EGFP or OAMB DNA resulted in a production efficiency of transgenic rats of 1.4-2.9%, comparable with 0.9-2.6% when non-coated control DNA was used. Intracytoplasmic injection of the sperm heads exposed to RecA-coated EGFP DNA did not produce any transgenic rats (0 vs. 0-2.8% in control groups). Thus, the recombinase-mediated DNA transfer contributed very little to the production of transgenic rats by means of pronuclear microinjection and intracytoplasmic sperm injection.
The increasing popularity of conditional knockout (KO) technology has resulted in the demand for efficient FLP deleter mice. In addition, FLP deleters are needed in genetic backgrounds that are suited to behavioral studies. We generated CAG-FLPe transgenic (Tg) mice with the C57BL/6J genetic background, which is one of the most commonly-used strains in behavioral studies. We assessed the recombination efficiency of the CAG-FLPe-Tg lines by crossing them with a mouse line carrying a FRT-PGK-neo-FRT cassette. Four of five independent CAG-FLPe lines induced recombination in most (91%-100%) of their progenies, although a small fraction (0%-30%, depending on the line) showed mosaic recombination patterns. These animals are highly potent as deleters of FRT cassettes and are useful for behavioral studies involving conditional KO mice.
Multiple exposure to theophylline, a phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitor, induces acinar hypertrophy in the salivary gland. This study examined the effect of theophylline on the gene expression of secretory proteins and phosphodiesterases in the submaxillary gland. Male F344 rats received saline or theophylline (50 mg/kg) intraperitoneally for 4 days. The gene expressions for the secretory protein, cystatin S (CysS), and PDE subfamilies 3A and 4D in the submaxillary gland were quantified using RT-PCR. Theophylline exposure resulted in a sustained increase in mRNA expression for CysS and PDE3A, but PDE4D gene expression was unchanged. Our results suggest that submaxillary hypertrophy is primarily caused by the enhanced transcription of CysS, and that the transcription of each PDE subfamily gene is regulated differently.