The Care and Breeding of Laboratory Animals

The Care and Breeding of Laboratory Animals

The Care and Breeding of Laboratory Animals

The Care and Breeding of Laboratory Animals

Excerpt

EDMOND J. FARRIS

The Wistar Institute of Anatomy and Biology Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The albino rat (Mus norvegicus albinus) has become the most commonly used laboratory mammal. Albinos are gentle, clean, easily handled, readily trained, and inexpensive to maintain. They live approximately 3 years and begin breeding at about 3 months of age. The litters are large and can be secured at any season. The rat is highly resistant to the usual infections and is particularly satisfactory for surgical experiments. The rat has been used in practically all fields of investigation.

In this chapter, brief practical information is given, based on the extensive experience of The Wistar Institute in the breeding and care of albino and other rats for research purposes. For more detailed information, the reader is referred to a comprehensive monograph (Farris and Griffith, 1949). This contains chapters by twenty-nine contributors on the breeding of the rat, general methods of handling, gross anatomy, experimental methods, embryology, dietary requirements, teeth, digestive system, metabolism, central nervous system, techniques for investigation of psychological phenomena, circulatory system, use in biologic assay of hormones, dosage of drugs, hematology, radiology, surgery, histologic methods, osseous system, eye, protozoan parasites, metazoan parasites, and spontaneous diseases. This publication may be referred to when the rat or other small mammals are employed for experimental work.

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