OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the number of males per cage as a possible risk factor for murine ankylosing enthesopathy (ANKENT)--a spontaneous joint disease with parallels to human seronegative spondylarthropathies--since ANKENT shows incomplete penetrance of genetic susceptibility factors among individuals living in a stable environment. METHODS: Frequency of ANKENT was compared among males housed with females, with other males, or alone. RESULTS: In three independent cohorts, a trend was observed that males housed with females rarely develop the disease, in contrast to males housed with other males (P < 0.25, P < 0.05, and P < 0.01). Furthermore, no males caged alone developed ANKENT, whereas disease did occur in males grouped together (P < 0.01). When healthy males (retired breeders) were recaged either alone or with other males, ANKENT developed among the grouped males only (P < 0.005). CONCLUSIONS: Caging males together is a relative risk factor for ANKENT. Grouped caging may perturb the immune system through endocrine pathways or modify microbiological load through behaviour (for example, infection due to biting).
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.