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Permanent URL to this publication: http://dx.doi.org/10.5167/uzh-20116

Schuler, B; Rettich, A; Vogel, J; Gassmann, M; Arras, M (2009). Optimized surgical techniques and postoperative care improve survival rates and permit accurate telemetric recording in exercising mice. BMC Veterinary Research, 5(1):28.

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BACKGROUND: The laboratory mouse is commonly used as a sophisticated model in biomedical research. However, experiments requiring major surgery frequently lead to serious postoperative complications and death, particularly if genetically modified mice with anatomical and physiological abnormalities undergo extensive interventions such as transmitter implantation. Telemetric transmitters are used to study cardiovascular physiology and diseases. Telemetry yields reliable and accurate measurement of blood pressure in the free-roaming, unanaesthetized and unstressed mouse, but data recording is hampered substantially if measurements are made in an exercising mouse. Thus, we aimed to optimize transmitter implantation to improve telemetric signal recording in exercising mice as well as to establish a postoperative care regimen that promotes convalescence and survival of mice after major surgery in general. RESULTS: We report an optimized telemetric transmitter implantation technique (fixation of the transmitter body on the back of the mouse with stainless steel wires) for subsequent measurement of arterial blood pressure during maximal exercise on a treadmill. This technique was used on normal (wildtype) mice and on transgenic mice with anatomical and physiological abnormalities due to constitutive overexpression of recombinant human erythropoietin. To promote convalescence of the animals after surgery, we established a regimen for postoperative intensive care: pain treatment (flunixine 5 mg/kg bodyweight, subcutaneously, twice per day) and fluid therapy (600 mul, subcutaneously, twice per day) were administrated for 7 days. In addition, warmth and free access to high energy liquid in a drinking bottle were provided for 14 days following transmitter implantation. This regimen led to a substantial decrease in overall morbidity and mortality. The refined postoperative care and surgical technique were particularly successful in genetically modified mice with severely compromised physiological capacities. CONCLUSION: Recovery and survival rates of mice after major surgery were significantly improved by careful management of postoperative intensive care regimens including key supportive measures such as pain relief, administration of fluids, and warmth. Furthermore, fixation of the blood pressure transmitter provided constant reliable telemetric recordings in exercising mice.


7 citations in Web of Science®
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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Division of Surgical Research
04 Faculty of Medicine > Center for Integrative Human Physiology
05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Institute of Veterinary Physiology
05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Institute of Laboratory Animal Science
04 Faculty of Medicine > Center for Medical Research
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
Date:2 August 2009
Deposited On:11 Aug 2009 09:40
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 13:19
Publisher:BioMed Central
Publisher DOI:10.1186/1746-6148-5-28
PubMed ID:19646283

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