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Open Access Euthanasia of Neonatal Mice with Carbon Dioxide

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Exposure to carbon dioxide (CO2) is the most prevalent method used to euthanize rodents in biomedical research. The purpose of this study was to determine the time of CO2 exposure required to euthanize neonatal mice (0 to 10 days old). Multiple groups of mice were exposed to 100% CO2 for time periods between 5 and 60 min. Mice were placed in room air for 10 or 20 min after CO2 exposure, to allow for the chance of recovery. If mice recovered at one time point, a longer exposure was examined. Inbred and outbred mice were compared. Results of the study indicated that time to death varied with the age of the animals and could be as long as 50 min on the day of birth and differed between inbred and outbred mice. Institutions euthanizing neonatal mice with CO2 may wish to adjust their CO2 exposure time periods according the age of the mice and their genetic background.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Animal Services, Charles River Laboratories, 251 Ballardvale St, Wilmington, Massachusetts 01887 2: Laboratory Animal Health Services, The Jackson Laboratory, 600 Main St., Bar Harbor, Maine 04609 3: United States Geological Survey—Great Lakes Science Center, Lake Superior Biological Station, 2800 Lakeshore Dr., Ashland, Wisconsin 54806 4: University Laboratory Resources and Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 3800 Spruce Street, Suite 177, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104

Publication date: 2005-06-01

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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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