rasH2 and the 3Rs

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In the spirit of Russell and Burch's 3Rs, scientists are developing new tools and methodologies to reduce the use of animal models wherever possible. A very good example is the rasH2 mouse model, which was developed as an alternative to the traditional, two-year carcinogenicity testing of compounds for mutagenic and non-mutagenic chemically- induced tumor formation. Transgenic Mice as an Ethical Alternative The rasH2 mouse was developed in...  Read More

Webinar Recap: Historical Control Database of Spontaneous Lesions in Tg.rasH2 Mice

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On May 25, 2017, Dr. Madhav Paranjpe presented a webinar on the state of evidence surrounding the use of Tg.RasH2 carcinogenicity studies as a substitute for the two-year mouse bioassay. His presentation — "Historical Control Database of Spontaneous Lesions (Neoplastic & Non-Neoplastic) in Transgenic Tg.rasH2 Mice" — covered evidence drawn from fifty peer-reviewed studies, personal experience, and analysis of the growing body of historical control data supporting...  Read More

The Power of Laboratory Mice Infographic

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Looking for an accessible primer on the state of laboratory mice in biomedical research? Download Taconic Biosciences' new infographic The Power of Laboratory Mice, or request the infographic as a poster. This laboratory mice infographic can be a helpful reference to those just beginning their work with in vivo research models, as well as to researchers with extensive experience in the lab. It presents information on how...  Read More

Proposed Changes to ICH Carcinogenicity Testing Guidelines — Decision Delayed

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While evidence mounts in support of revised carcinogenicity testing guidelines, the number of Carcinogenicity Assessment Documents (CAD) submitted to the ICH S-1 expert working group fell below expected levels. After extending the submission period by two years9, the expert working group (EWG) will meet in June of 2017 to review the conclusions of drug regulatory agencies on the viability of excluding some pharmaceutical agents from the requirement...  Read More

Mutation Reduces Immune Response in C57BL/6J Mice

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Researchers from the University of Iowa inadvertently identified an Nlrp12 missense mutation which inhibits immune responses in C57BL/6J mice. Further investigation reveals the mutation occurred prior to 1971, potentially impacting decades of research conducted on affected mouse models. Reduced Neutrophil Recruitment in C57BL/6J In this study, the authors compared C57BL/6J and C57BL/6NTac mice and noted that C57BL/6J mice had reduced neutrophil recruitment. Initially hypothesizing the difference was...  Read More

Rat Polyomavirus 2 - A New Agent of Concern?

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Recently, a novel rodent polyomavirus, rat polyomavirus 2 (RPyV2), was discovered. This new agent was isolated from a colony of highly immunodeficient rats which developed clinical illness, including emaciation, labored breathing and mortality, particularly among breeding females and pups. IDEXX BioResearch, working collaboratively with the affected academic institution, was finally able to identify the cause as a novel rat virus, which they named Rattus norvegicus polyomavirus 2...  Read More

Choosing a Health Standard for Your Model

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Taconic Biosciences produces rodent models at several different health standards. How do you know which health designation to choose when ordering animals? Taconic rodent models are available at multiple health standards, enabling researchers to choose the most appropriate model for their studies. The standards can be grouped into barrier standards (with exclusion lists) and gnotobiotic isolator standards (in which all organisms in a location are known). A...  Read More

Three Reasons You Shouldn't Use Heterozygous Nude Mice or Rats as Sentinels

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If you are reading this you already know that the use of sentinel animals in research and production colonies is critical to facilitate health monitoring and maintain animal quality. A sentinel animal must have a strong but not excessive immune response to infectious agents, with the ability to seroconvert to viral agents. You are also probably aware that commonly used models include: the hearty outbred Swiss Webster...  Read More

rasH2 Helps Improve Drug Testing

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GEN Exclusives has published an article by Amar Thyagarajan, PhD, Senior Product Manager at Taconic Biosciences, titled New Guidelines Involve the Testing Done on Animal Models. In his article, Dr. Thyagarajan helps us understand the nature of proposed changes to carcinogenicity safety testing to significantly reduce the amount of time and money it takes to achieve drug approval. A two-year rodent bio-assay to ascertain carcinogenicity has been...  Read More

A Mouse by Any Other Name - Nomenclature Tutorial

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Mice and rats play a critical role in all areas of biomedical research and have been pivotal in many medical advances. Scientific progress requires that results are reproducible and reliable in order to allow others to expand upon current research to improve human health outcomes. Knowledge and attention to several key areas when planning research studies using mice and rats can greatly assist with these objectives. It...  Read More


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