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Open Access Evaluation and Characterization of Congenital Hypothyroidism in rdw Dwarf Rats

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The rdw rat is a new strain of dwarf mutant that has decreased blood thyroxine (T4) and growth hormone (GH) concentrations and testicular enlargement during development and aging. To confirm whether this strain can be used as a new hypothyroid model, the experiments reported here were carried out, using adult rdw rats, rdw rats treated with thyroxine, and clinically normal (N) Wistar-Imamichi rats. Clinical parameters of deficient thyroid function in rdw rats were chosen for evaluation and characterization. Body weight, hemoglobin (Hb) concentration, hematocrit (Hct), glucose (GLU), and systolic blood pressure were significantly lower, and serum values for aspartate transaminase (AST), total cholesterol (TC), total protein (TP), and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) were higher in rdw than in N rats. Serum concentrations of total T4 and free triiodothyronine (FT3) were significantly lower, and serum thyroid-stimulation hormone (TSH) concentration was markedly higher in rdw than in N rats. Serum GH concentration was significantly lower in rdw than in N rats. Results of histologic examination indicated that the thyroid gland of rdw rats was markedly atrophied, compared with that of N rats. Results of clinical examination of organs and hematologic and biochemical values in rdw rats corresponded to those of the hypothyroid state in humans. Most organ weights (heart, kidney, spleen, and adrenal gland), hematologic and biochemical values (Hb, Hct TC, TP, BUN), blood pressure, and serum hormone (TSH and GH) values underwent substantial restoration (partial or complete) toward normal in response to replacement therapy. In conclusion, the rdw rat is a useful model of congenital hypothyroidism.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Laboratory of Animal Reproduction, Tohoku University, Sendai 981, Japan 2: Laboratory of Animal Anatomy, Yamaguchi University, Yamaguchi, Japan 3: Laboratory of Animal Reproduction, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan

Publication date: 1998-10-01

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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