C57BL/KsJ db/db mice
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Summary Expression of obesity-induced diabetes associated with the diabetes or db mutation in mice varies in inbred strains. This study utilized a genetic analysis to evaluate the number of genes responsible for the difference in diabetes responses between mice of the susceptible C57BL/KsJ (BL/Ks) and resistant 129/J inbred strains. BL/Ks (db/+) males and 129/J (+/+) females were bred to generate F1 hybrids, and the F1 females (db/+ and +/+, distinguished by progeny testing) were backcrossed to BL/Ks (db/+) males. A total of 252 backcrossed males were obtained, of which 31 were db/db and obese. While the plasma glucose of all the fed back-crossed mice was greater than 22 mmol/l, the expression of diabetes varied considerably, as measured by fasting plasma glucose, fed plasma insulin, and pancreatic insulin and proinsulin mRNA content. That proinsulin mRNA content was a good indicator of diabetes severity and islet dysfunction was seen in the inverse correlation between proinsulin mRNA content and fasting plasma glucose (r=0.69, p〈0.001), and a direct correlation between proinsulin mRNA and plasma insulin (r=0.86, p〈0.001), and pancreatic insulin content (r=0.61, p〈0.01). If a single gene were responsible for severe islet dysfunction, one-half of the backcrossed mice would develop low proinsulin mRNA levels like the BL/Ks parent, and one-half would be resistant to islet destruction. Statistical evaluation (SKUMIX) of the distribution of these parameters in backcrossed mice rejected with a high degree of probability a bimodal distribution. Thus, it was concluded that while a dominant gene (or genes) is responsible for diabetic (〉22 mmol/l) unfasted plasma glucose in all backcrossed mice, allelic differences at two or more genetic loci are responsible for the differences between the two strains in diabetes severity measured by fasting plasma glucose, pancreatic insulin, and proinsulin mRNA content.
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