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Alcohol. 1997 Jul-Aug;14(4):389-95.

Ethanol teratogenesis in the C57BL/6J, DBA/2J, and A/J inbred mouse strains.

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Department of Psychology, University of Northern Colorado, Greeley 80639, USA.


Research has shown variations in susceptibility to alcohol-related birth defects in humans. Genetic differences are one reason for this variability. This study compared three inbred mouse strains to determine whether they differ in their susceptibilities to ethanol teratogenesis because previous studies have generated conflicting data. Pregnant C57BL/6J (B6), DBA/2J (D2), and A/J (A) dams were intubated intragastrically with either an acute dose of ethanol (5.8 g/kg) or an isocaloric amount of maltose-dextrine on day 9 of pregnancy. Litters were removed on day 18 of pregnancy and examined for gross, soft-tissue, and skeletal malformations. Results showed that ethanol-exposed B6 litters had a higher percentage of digit (19%), kidney (24%), and skeletal (32%, mostly vertebral) malformations than their maltose-exposed controls (7% or below). Prenatal exposure to ethanol increased skeletal (68%, both rib and vertebral) malformations for A litters when compared to their maltose-exposed controls (4%), but did not increase digit or kidney malformations. Ethanol-exposed D2 litters did not differ from maltose-exposed controls. Maternal blood ethanol levels did not differ among the B6, D2, and A strains. These results provide additional evidence suggesting a genetic component to ethanol teratogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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