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Open Access Humane Endpoints for Guinea Pigs Used for Mycobacterium tuberculosis Vaccine Research

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Guinea pigs are a commonly used model for tuberculosis vaccine research. Loss of body weight is the most frequently described humane endpoint for animals used in these studies. During a chronic study, we noted labored breathing in some tuberculosis-infected guinea pigs. To develop consistent humane endpoints for these guinea pigs, we performed an observational study using multiple clinical signs. A combination of body weight loss, labored breathing, and activity level during handling estimated the time to euthanasia within approximately 7 d. Histologic severity scores of lesions in the cranial or caudal lung lobe (or both) supported clinical endpoints. This study presents humane endpoints for the refinement of studies using guinea pigs in tuberculosis research.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Division of Comparative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada;, Email: [email protected] 2: Division of Comparative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 3: Departments of Molecular Genetics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 4: Princess Margaret Cancer Center, Immune Therapy Program, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 5: Department of Pathobiology, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario, Canada 6: Division of Comparative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Departments of Physiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Publication date: February 1, 2018

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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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