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Dr. Fernando Benavides, Laboratory Animal Genetic Services- Department of Epigenetics and Molecular Carcinogenesis - The University of Texas - M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
More often than not, when I ask investigators, postdocs or students what particular substrain of a common inbred stain are they using, I get that “what are you talking about?” face. With this presentation, I want to create awareness on the existence of a variety of substrains of mice that, if ignored, could potentially affect the results and/or repeatability of some experiments. Most mouse users are not fully aware that inbred strains of mice (same for rats) are actually distributed in “families” of related substrains that stem from a common ancestral strain and that these present several genetic differences. Over the years, while permanent inbreeding effectively eliminates a proportion of new mutant alleles, another undetected fraction may become progressively fixed in the homozygous state, replacing the original allele, a process known as genetic drift. Genetic drift contributes inexorably to strain divergence and the generation of substrains when the same strain is propagated independently in different places.
Dr. Fernando Benavides is Professor and Director of the Laboratory Animal Genetic Services at MD Anderson Cancer Center, Smithville, Texas. Dr. Benavides received a D.V.M and a Ph.D. in Genetics from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina. His Ph.D. training on Mouse Genetics was done at Institut Pasteur, Paris, France (with Dr. Jean-Louis Guénet as PhD mentor). Dr. Benavides is a diplomate of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine (ACLAM) since 2003 and he serves as Chief IACUC veterinarian for the MD Anderson Smithville campus since 2006. Dr. Benavides has a strong background in positional cloning of spontaneous mutations and has described several new mouse models. He has published several books, chapters and reviews on Mouse Genetics and Genetic Quality Controls in mice and rats.
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