GeneticsLiving With CFResearch

When a Bad Animal Model is Good: Cystic Fibrosis

A “good” animal model is one that has the same symptoms of a disease that we do, right?

Not always. Sometimes we can actually learn more when an animal is not a perfect model; their good health can reveal new points of intervention. That’s the case for cystic fibrosis (CF), according to findings published today inScience. Mice with CF that do not develop airway infections hold a chemical clue to how people with CF might do the same.

Some animal models are better than others. Golden retrievers get muscular dystrophy much as we do, and sheep are stand-ins for kids with the CLN6 “late-infantile” form of Batten disease.

Despite the many mouse varieties used in biomedical research, mice don’t live long enough to mimic some late-onset neurodegenerative disorders. For example, they may die before certain symptoms of  Huntington disease (HD) typically appear in humans. That’s part of why compounds such as Riluzole, remacemide and CoQ10 that are promising in mice didn’t fare so well in clinical trials for treating HD.

Read More at Genetics in Context!

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