- Top of page
- Materials and methods
- Principal findings and directions for future research
It is known that four common inbred mouse strains show defects of the forebrain commissures. The BALB/cJ strain has a low frequency of abnormally small corpus callosum, whereas the 129 strains have many animals with deficient corpus callosum. The I/LnJ and BTBR T+ tf/J strains never have a corpus callosum, whereas half of I/LnJ and almost all BTBR show severely reduced size of the hippocampal commissure. Certain F1 hybrid crosses among these strains are known to be less severely abnormal than the inbred parents, suggesting that the parent strains have different genetic causes of commissure defects. In this study, all hybrid crosses among the four strains were investigated. The BTBR × I/Ln hybrid expressed almost no defects of the hippocampal commissure, unlike its inbred parent strains. Numerous three-way crosses among the four strains yielded many mice with no corpus callosum and severely reduced hippocampal commissure, which shows that the phenotypic defect can result from several different combinations of genetic alleles. The F2 and F3 hybrid crosses of BTBR and I/LnJ had almost 100% absence of the corpus callosum but about 50% frequency of deficient hippocampal commissure. The four-way hybrid cross among all four abnormal strains involved highly fertile parents and yielded a very wide phenotypic range of defects from almost no hippocampal commissure to totally normal forebrain commissures. The F2 and F3 crosses as well as the four-way cross provide excellent material for studies of genetic linkage and behavioral consequences of commissure defects.