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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006 Oct 20;349(2):825-32. Epub 2006 Aug 24.

Phenotypic screening of hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF) 4-gamma receptor knockout mice.

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AstraZeneca Transgenic and Comparative Genomics, AstraZeneca R&D, Mölndal, Sweden.


Using the mouse as a model organism in pharmaceutical research presents unique advantages as its physiology in many ways resembles the human physiology, it also has a relatively short generation time, low breeding and maintenance costs, and is available in a wide variety of inbred strains. The ability to genetically modify mouse embryonic stem cells to generate mouse models that better mimic human disease is another advantage. In the present study, a comprehensive phenotypic screening protocol is applied to elucidate the phenotype of a novel mouse knockout model of hepatocyte nuclear factor (HNF) 4-gamma. HNF4-gamma is expressed in the kidneys, gut, pancreas, and testis. The first level of the screen is aimed at general health, morphologic appearance, normal cage behaviour, and gross neurological functions. The second level of the screen looks at metabolic characteristics and lung function. The third level of the screen investigates behaviour more in-depth and the fourth level consists of a thorough pathological characterisation, blood chemistry, haematology, and bone marrow analysis. When compared with littermate wild-type mice (HNF4-gamma(+/+)), the HNF4-gamma knockout (HNF4-gamma(-/-)) mice had lowered energy expenditure and locomotor activity during night time that resulted in a higher body weight despite having reduced intake of food and water. HNF4-gamma(-/-) mice were less inclined to build nest and were found to spend more time in a passive state during the forced swim test.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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