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Brain Res. 1999 Jan 23;816(2):337-49.

Behavioural analysis and susceptibility to CNS injury of four inbred strains of mice.

Author information

1
Neuroscience Unit, Glaxo Wellcome Research and Development, Medicines Research Centre, Gunnels Wood Road, Stevenage, Herts, SG1 2NY, UK.

Abstract

Interpretation of data from gene targeting studies can be confounded by the inherent traits of the background inbred strains used in the generation of transgenic and null mutant mice. We have therefore compared the behaviour and response to CNS injury of four inbred strains commonly used in molecular genetic studies to produce models of neurological disease. Adult, male 129/Ola, BALB/c, C57BL/6 and FVB/N mice (2-4 months) were initially subjected to behavioural tests that comprised a neurological examination, determination of motor function and cognitive testing in the Morris water maze. Also the response to CNS injury following an acute kainic acid (KA) challenge (30 mg kg-1, i.p.) was determined. The 129/Ola and BALB/c strains showed significant motor deficits when compared with the C57BL/6 and FVB/N strains. In contrast, only the FVB/N strain showed evidence of apparent cognitive impairments in the water maze as evidenced by increased pathlengths to locate the escape platforms and impaired performance in a probe trial. In addition, the FVB/N strain showed the most severe seizure response and mortality rate (62%) following administration of KA (30 mg kg-1, i.p.). These behavioural changes were also associated with a greater degree of cell body and synaptophysin loss in the pyramidal CA3 hippocampal cell layer and astrogliosis 72-h post-dose. These data suggest that the FVB/N strain may not be the most suitable background strain for the development of new transgenic mice for the study of genes implicated in the learning and memory process.

PMID:
9878817
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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