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Effect of Ground Transportation on Adrenocortical Activity in Prepuberal Female Mice from Five Different Genetic Backgrounds

1
Charles River Laboratories, Sandhofer Weg 7, 97633 Sulzfeld, Germany
2
Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinärplatz 1, A-1210 Vienna, Austria
3
Comparative Medicine, Center for Molecular Medicine, University of Cologne, Robert-Koch-Straße 21, 50931 Cologne, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2019, 9(5), 239; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9050239
Received: 3 April 2019 / Revised: 7 May 2019 / Accepted: 13 May 2019 / Published: 15 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Welfare)
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Simple Summary

For research purposes, mice are often transported between institutions, which may elicit stress, thereby influencing results. We determined adrenocortical activity by measuring fecal corticosterone metabolites (FCMs), as a stress marker, in prepuberal mice from five genetic backgrounds, namely C57BL/6J, C57BL/6NCrl, FVB/NCrl, Crl:CD1(ICR), and BALB/cAnCrl. Only C57BL/6N showed significantly higher FCM levels the day after transport, but baseline levels were attained within four days.

Abstract

Specific experimental protocols necessitate transportation, a potentially stressful event that could confound results. We determined adrenocortical activity by measuring fecal corticosterone metabolites (FCMs), as a stress marker, in prepuberal (three-week old) female C57BL/6J, C57BL/6NCrl, FVB/NCrl, Crl:CD1(ICR), and BALB/cAnCrl mice. On each transport day, five female cage mates per genetic background were weaned and transported in stable groups via truck from the breeding to the research facility. Fecal pellets were collected on Days 0, 1, and 4. Mice were superovulated for embryo production to determine if repeated fecal collection impacts this procedure. The average duration of transportation over 600 km and from packing to unpacking of mice was 7.24 and 22.62 h, respectively. FCM levels increased from Day 0 to Day 1 and decreased on Day 4 in all genetic backgrounds except in FVB/NCrl, but only B6N showed significantly higher FCM levels on Day 1. Furthermore, embryo production was not affected by repeated feces collection. The results show that weaning and immediate transport of prepuberal mice from the breeding to the research facility led to temporal and genetic background-dependent increases of adrenocortical activity in four of the five genetic backgrounds investigated, which returned to baseline levels within four days. View Full-Text
Keywords: mouse; transportation; stress; glucocorticoids; animal welfare mouse; transportation; stress; glucocorticoids; animal welfare
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rumpel, S.; Scholl, C.; Göbel, A.; Palme, R.; Mahabir, E. Effect of Ground Transportation on Adrenocortical Activity in Prepuberal Female Mice from Five Different Genetic Backgrounds. Animals 2019, 9, 239.

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