Ordering name: F344/NJcl-rnu/rnu
Availability: Live colony
These rats were discovered by chance in a colony of outbred Hooded rats at the Rowett Research Institute and were assigned to the genetic symbol rnu. The Central Institute for Experimental Animals introduced these rats and backcrossed them with inbred F344/N rats; we subsequently started the production and supply of these animals.
Because of the control of the single recessive gene rnu, homozygotes (mu/mu) are anatomically athymic and hairless in appearance (histologically, hair follicles are present and many animals have a hair coat at about 6 weeks after birth). Immunologically, they lack T-cell function. Because rats of this species are larger than nude mice, a greater quantity of tumor cells can be collected, and metastasis may occur depending on the tumor type. These rats have advantageous features that are not found in nude mice; for example, anticancer drugs can be administered via intravenous injection and the transplantation of tumor cells.