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Type: Journal article
Title: Mouse models of mastitis - how physiological are they?
Author: Ingman, W.
Glynn, D.
Hutchinson, M.
Citation: International Breastfeeding Journal, 2015; 10(1):12-1-12-5
Publisher: BioMed Central Ltd.
Issue Date: 2015
ISSN: 1746-4358
Statement of
Wendy V Ingman, Danielle J Glynn, and Mark R Hutchinson
Abstract: Lactation mastitis is a common, but poorly understood, inflammatory breast disease that is a significant health burden. A better understanding of the aetiology of mastitis is urgently required, and will assist in the development of improved prevention and treatment strategies in both human and animal species. Studies in mice have the potential to greatly assist in identifying new drug candidates for clinical trials, and in developing a better understanding of the disease. Mouse models of mastitis involve administration of a mastitis-inducing agent to the mammary gland usually during lactation to examine the host immune response, and progression through to resolution of the disease. There are important variations in the protocols of these mouse models that critically affect the conclusions that can be drawn from the research. Some protocols involve weaning of offspring at the time of mastitis induction, and there are variations in the mastitis-inducing agent and its carrier. Induction of mammary gland involution through weaning of offspring limits the capacity to study the disease in the context of a lactating mammary gland. Administration of live bacteria in an aqueous carrier can cause sepsis, restricting the physiological relevance of the model. Mouse model research should employ appropriately designed controls and closely monitor the health of the mice. In this commentary, we discuss the advantages and study design limitations of each mouse model, and highlight the potential for further development of physiologically relevant mouse models of mastitis.
Keywords: Mastitis
Mouse models
Mammary gland
Description: Commentary
Rights: © 2015 Ingman et al.; licensee BioMed Central. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
DOI: 10.1186/s13006-015-0038-5
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Physiology publications

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