Category: Science & Technology
Scientists at the University of Minnesota have developed a new way to study mice that better mimics the immune system of adult humans and which could significantly improve ways to test potential therapeutics. Published online today in the journal Nature, the researchers describe the limitations of laboratory mice for immunology research and reveal the benefits of what they are calling "dirty mice."
"Standard lab mice don't reflect important features of the adult human immune system. We wanted to know whether this is because lab animals are shielded from microbes that normal mice encounter in the wild," said Stephen Jameson, Ph.D., co-senior author, professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology and member of the Center for Immunology, University of Minnesota. "Lab mice remain critical for basic immunology research, but it was important to find a better way to model the complex immune system of adult humans."