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Germ-free Mouse


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1. What are Germ-free Mice?

Germ-free mice lack all microorganisms (as determined within the limitations of the detection methods available) and are housed in tightly controlled and monitored isolators to prevent contamination. They are microbiologically sterile; no living organisms can be cultured from germ-free mouse specimens.

In the past 20 years, studying the mechanisms of interaction between gut microbes and the immune system has become a new focus of research, in which germ-free animals have played an indispensable role as models for studying the mechanisms of how the gastrointestinal microbiome influences the host. In the past decades, the amount of literature featuring applications of germ-free mice has grown exponentially.

 

2. The Relationship between the Microbiome and the Human Body

The human body is a superorganism composed of its own cells and commensal microbes. Since the total number of microorganisms, as well as their genes, are much larger than those of humans, they are destined to have important impact on our health.

 

Human + Microorganisms = Superorganism

Person

Microbiome

Superorganism

  • 3*1013 cells
  • 23,000 genes
  • 4*1013 bacteria
  • 2*1014 viruses
  • 4*1012 fungus
  • Other microorganisms (Archaea, Protists)
  • 8 million genes in total

Complex interactions across the genomic and organismal levels

 

 

3. Applicationsof Germ-free Mice

Germ-free mice are bred in isolators that fully block exposure to other microorganisms, with the intent of keeping their experimental results free from the interference of other biological and environmental factors - such a 'clean slate' is conducive to analyzing host pathology and determining how specific microbiomes influence physiology and disease. Germ-free animals are widely used in multiple fields in life sciences for advantages that include accurate test results, low animal dosage, high statistical value, and high long-term survival rate.  

Application Field: Cancer, Metabolic Disease, Autoimmune Disease, Mental Health, Infectious Diseases, Nutrition, Safety Inspection & Effectiveness Evaluation, and more.

 

4. Introduction to Cyagen’s Germ-free Animal Platform

Cyagen has introduced a complete range of germ-free animal husbandry and testing programs from our partner and leading provider of research models, Taconic Biosciences. Together, we have assembled an excellent germ-free (GF) animal technical team and established a standardized sterile animal feeding and breeding detection technology system. We can provide customers with germ-free (GF) mouse technical services that meet a wide variety of SPF standards as well as after-sales and training services.

 

  • Germ-free Platform Personnel

With the purpose of providing a high-quality product and professional services to customers around the world, Cyagen has assembled its own teams of germ-free (GF) animal technicians and project managers. In addition, to ensure GF services are consistent with the international standards, all technical personnel undergo strict training and must pass the audit and certification for the industrial systems. Thus, Cyagen can produce germ-free mice and provide relevant experimental services.

  

  • Quality Management of Germ-free Mouse

 

Material Control

Breeding Management

Environment Control

  • Strict cleaning and sterilization procedures of materials
  • High-quality sterile containers meet international standards
  • Advanced dust-free absorbent pad and multiple environmental enrichment materials
  • Professional veterinarian team
  • Scientific and reasonable experimental scheme
  • Strict control on the breeding density
  • Delicate pregnancy management
  • Strict microbial monitoring and genetic control

  • Accurate room temperature and humidity control
  • Unobstructed air movement and control
  • Moderate light cycle

 

As the germ-free mouse breeding a challenging task, every section is of vital importance. Cyagen ensures all its high-quality services are standardized in accordance with internationally recognized Germ-free (GF) testing systems.

 

  • Periodic Detection ofthe Environmental Microorganisms of Isolator:

Each Germ-free (GF) isolator is tested quarterly via the IHMS™ health testing system (International Health Monitoring System™) for a list of defined viruses, bacteria, mycoplasma, fungi, and parasites. Microbial monitoring of the isolator environment is designed to regularly identify possible contamination of GF isolators.

 

  • Ancillary Microbial Monitoring of the Environment:

Each isolator is tested weekly for all aerobic and anaerobic organisms. The sample is sourced from animals (feces) and environment (feed, water, isolator surfaces, etc.). No shipments are made from a Germ-free isolator until there are a minimum of six consecutive weeks of negative culture results as well as an IHMS™ health report.

  

  • Germ-free Mouse Platform Facilities

Cyagen’s GF animals are housed in top-level sterile isolators, with different sizes of isolators used to prevent cross-contamination from operating on animals. The water, bedding, feed, and all materials that come in direct contact with animals are strictly sterilized with high-pressure steam. The air that enters the living environment of GF mice is purified by high-efficiency filters.

 

5. Products and Services provided by Cyagen’s Germ-free Mouse Technical Platform

 

(1) The Production and Sales of Germ-free Mice

In accordance with our strategic cooperation with Taconic, the leading germ-free (GF) mice provider in the US, Cyagen has introduced our role as a breeder and sales distributor of leading GF mouse strains in the Asia-Pacific region. As a world leader in the GF mice industry, Taconic’s production of GF mice according to rigorous health standards has been unanimously recognized by biomedical scientists to meet the strictest exclusion criteria. The germ-free strains that Cyagen can provide in the APAC region are shown in the following table:

 

Germ-free Mouse Strain

Product ID.

B6

GF-B6

BALB/c

GF-BALB

Swiss Webster

GF-SW

 

Background Introduction of the Germ-free Mouse:


a. C57BL/6N

  • The most usedinbred strain and the first option for most genetically modified models.
  • It is the preferred strain for diet-induced obesity studies. It is commonly used in autoimmune disease models, includingfor experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) and collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). For oncology, B6 has been used in syngeneic tumor models. It is also used in addiction, behavior, toxicology and many other research areas.
  • Immunology: Th1-biased

 

b.  BALB/c

  • A commonly used inbred strain with good reproductive performance.
  • This strain is widely used in immunology research, exhibits good antibody production performance and is often used for vaccine studies. BALB/c is widely applied in the syngeneic tumor model and the studies of allergy and asthma.
  • Immunology: Th1-biased

 

c. Swiss Webster 

  • Swiss Webster is a general-purpose outbred strain with excellent reproductive performance.
  • Extensively used for decades in research and drug safety testing. GF Swiss Webster mice are excellent embryo recipients or foster mothers.

 

(2) Setting-Up Your Sterile Animal Facilities

Cyagen is cooperating with the world’s leading manufacturers of sterile mice materials and equipment to provide you with a full range of sterile animal breeding equipment, installation, and operation training services to help smooth the implementation of sterile mouse equipment.

 

(3) Sterile Mouse Laboratory Services

Since most laboratories have limited space and equipment for sterile mouse colonies, Cyagen is providing customers with personalized germ-free mouse experimental & technical services based on the negotiated needs of users.

 

        a. Intestinal Microbial Transplantation Services

Constructing a human source flora (HFA) animal model based on sterile animals can better explain the relationship between intestinal flora and human nutrition, disease, immunology, and more. Cyagen can transplant specific microbial groups to generate gnotobiotic animal groups tailored to project requirements.

b. Germ-free Mouse Model Customization Services

No matter what strain of mouse you are interested in (wild-type or gene-edited mice), Cyagen can customize germ-free mouse models according to your needs, which can more effectively support your research on the role of microorganisms in health and disease. 

c. Study on the Interaction Mechanism of Genes and Microflora

The occurrence and development of chronic diseases are often influenced by a combination of genes and gut microflora. To discover the primary pathological drivers of these diseases, we need to study both genetically modified and germ-free animal models. With the combination of Cyagen’s mature genetic modification model platform and the industry’s leading germ-free mouse technical platform, Cyagen can provide customers with a one-stop solution for studying the mechanisms of interaction between genes and microflora.

d. Customization Services

For personalized project requirements, Cyagen can provide customers with a reasonable plan for germ-free mouse technical & experimental services, based on the negotiated needs of users.

 

 

 

 

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