Holistic Management Optimizes Rodent Colonies

Preclinical studies typically require a significant investment in genetically engineered models that are uniquely relevant to the study objective, so it's vital that these research colonies are managed in a way that optimizes time, cost, and quality. In this article in Science, Dr. Jennifer Pearson-Smith, scientific program manager at Taconic Biosciences, discusses why a strategic and holistic approach to colony management is essential to the best research outcomes and the key components of such an approach. She also discusses the unique colony management requirements when working with animal models of neurodegenerative disease, particularly complex or multi-gene disorders like Alzheimer's disease:

"The increasing genetic complexity of the multi-gene and conditional and inducible models used in neuroscience research makes it challenging to balance the three constraints of any project: time, cost, and quality. Alzheimer's disease is a prime example. This is a multi-gene disorder, and providers like Taconic are starting to intercross mouse models to encompass the main Alzheimer's variants and others. But intercrossing introduces more severe phenotypes, which requires special care in handling these mice and ensuring they maintain genetic integrity."
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