SKHIN/Sprd, a new genetically defined inbred hairless mouse strain for UV-induced skin carcinogenesis studies

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Abstract

Strains of mice vary in their susceptibility to ultra-violet (UV) radiation-induced skin tumors. Some strains of hairless mice (homozygous for the spontaneous Hrhr mutation) are particularly susceptible to these tumors. The skin tumors that develop in hairless mice resemble, both at the morphologic and molecular levels, UV-induced squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) and their precursors in human. The most commonly employed hairless mice belong to the SKH1 stock. However, these mice are outbred and their genetic background is not characterized, which makes them a poor model for genetic studies. We have developed a new inbred strain from outbred SKH1 mice that we named SKHIN/Sprd (now at generation F31). In order to characterize the genetic background of this new strain, we genotyped a cohort of mice at F30 with 92 microsatellites and 140 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) evenly distributed throughout the mouse genome. We also exposed SKHIN/Sprd mice to chronic UV irradiation and showed that they are as susceptible to UV-induced skin carcinogenesis as outbred SKH1 mice. In addition, we proved that, albeit with low efficiency, inbred SKHIN/Sprd mice are suitable for transgenic production by classical pronuclear microinjection. This new inbred strain will be useful for the development of transgenic and congenic strains on a hairless inbred background as well as the establishment of syngeneic tumor cell lines. These new tools can potentially help elucidate a number of features of the cutaneous response to UV irradiation in humans, including the effect of genetic background and modifier genes.

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