Balb/c mice are widely used in all areas of biomedical research. This is one of the oldest lines, which is considered noncancerous, despite the available data on the frequency of spontaneous neoplastic formations of the mammary glands, lungs and kidneys, which in some sublines can reach 40%. Many cell and tissue cultures that are widely used in biomedical experiments originate from balb/c mice. Breeding success among rodents kept in laboratory conditions consists of a combination of factors related to the health of the livestock, as well as the conditions of maintenance (population density, feeding, environmental parameters). The review considers and systematizes the influence of certain factors on the reproduction of balb/c mice.
Temperature affects mice mainly when they are kept at elevated values. The humidity of the environment significantly affects the health of mice. The data related to both a decrease and an increase in humidity are considered. Indicators of ventilation and air exchange also have a significant impact on the reproduction of the mice population. The most important indicator that affects the welfare of animals is considered to be the concentration of ammonia.
The intensity and duration of lighting affect behavior, physiology, and reproductive parameters of balb/c mice. The greatest danger is high intensity of lighting and changes in circadian cycles, which can cause phototoxic retinopathy and have a systemic effect, reducing reproductive function. It is impossible to exclude the influence of nutrition factors on reproductive function. It is shown that both the deficiency of nutrients and their redundancy have a negative effect on reproduction indicators.
Enrichment of the habitat with various elements, including nesting material, has a positive effect on the fertility of balb/c mice, while the type of enrichment and nesting material does not play a significant role.
The review concludes with recommendations from the Jackson Laboratory specialists for optimizing the reproduction of balb/c mice.
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