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Inbred Strains of Mice: CE


Inbr: F? + 68. Black-eyed grey. Genet: Aw, ce . Originating in 1920 from wild mice trapped by J. E. Knight. The coat colour genetics later studied by Detlefsen. However, as the strain closely resembles `laboratory mice' (Taylor, 1972) and is not wild in behaviour, it seems possible that the original mutant mice were crossed with unidentified laboratory mice before being inbred. The strain is not widely used, and has a poor reproductive performance. However, its unique coat colour ensures authenticity, and it has an interesting range of tumour types, including a high incidence of ovarian tumours. F1 hybrids with DBA/ 1, DBA/2 and C3H have a high incidence of hepatomas (Hancock and Dickie, 1969).


Sporadic high incidence of ear chewing of young by mother in Lac substrain (Festing 1976, original observation). Low preference for sweet tasting substances (saccharin, sucrose, dulcin and acesulfame, averaged) (22/26) (Lush 1988).

Life-span intermediate in males (6/17 = 498 days) and long in females (14/17 = 703 days) in SPF fostered stock (Festing and Blackmore, 1971). High incidence of adrenal cortical tumours following castration (Heston, 1963). Progressively severe endocrine imbalance involving the ovaries, adrenal cortex and pituitary in CE x DBA F1 hybrids (Dickie and Atkinson, 1957; Dickie et al., 1957., 1957). Liver tumours 11-57% (Festing and Blackmore, 1971). Develops granulosa cell tumours of ovaries (Chai and Dickie, 1966). Ovarian tumours 34% in virgin females (Murphy, 1966).

Low serum ceruloplasmin levels in females (26/27) but intermediate in males (Meier and MacPike, 1968). Low systolic blood pressure (15/19) (Schlager and Weibust, 1967). Low brain choline acetyltransferase activity (7/7) (Tunnicliff et al., 1973., 1973).

Accessory spleens uncommon (8/9) (Hummel et al., 1966., 1966). Sensitive to Warfarin (1/12) (Lush and Arnold, 1975). Short sleeping time under hexobarbital anaesthetic (1/15 males, 2/15 females) (Lovell, 1976). High lymphocyte phytohaemagglutinin response (3/43) (Heiniger et al., 1975., 1975). Non-discriminator between `H' and `L' sheep RBC (cf. 6/18) (McCarthy and Dutton, 1975).

Resistant to induction of diabetes mellitus by encephalomyocarditis virus (cf. 7/14) (Boucher et al., 1975., 1975). Carries no detectable endogenous ecotropic MuLV DNA sequences (Jenkins et al 1982). Low voluntary comsumption of morphine in two-bottle choice situation (14/15) (Belknap et al, 1993).

Short sleeping time under pentobarbitone anaesthetic (1/23), Lovell (1986). Highly resistant to azocasein-induced amyloidosis (contrast 5 strains). This is associated with a single novel isoform of the serum amyloid A gene (Sipe et al, 1993, De Beer et al, 1993). This is inherited as an autosomal dominant gene (Gonnerman et al, 1995). Mice produce amyloid enhancing factor (Gonnerman et al, 1996).

Poor reproductive performance (23/25), colony output 0.53 young/female/wk, although litter size is large (6/22) at 6.1 (Festing, 1976a). High ratio of males at birth (1/11) (Cook and Vlcek, 1961).

Recommended host for transplantable rhabdomyosarcoma BW10139 (Kaliss, 1972).

Belknap J. K., Crabbe J. C., Riggan J., and O'Toole L. A. (1993) Voluntary consumption of morphine in 15 inbred mouse strains. Psychopharmacology 112, 352-358.

Boucher D. W., Hayashi K., Rosenthal J., and Notkins A. L. (1975) Virus-induced diabetes mellitus. III. Influence of sex and strain of host. J. Infect. Dis. 131, 462-466.

Chai C. K. and Dickie M. M. (1966) Endocrine variations, in Biology of the laboratory mouse, 2nd. ed. (Green E. L., ed), pp. 387-403. McGraw-Hill, New York.

Cook M. J. and Vlcek A. (1961) Sex ratio in mice. Nature 191, 89.

De Beer M. C., De Beer F. C., McCubbin W. D., Kay C. M., and Kindy M. S. (1993) Structural prerequisites for serum amyloid A fibril formation. J. Biol. Chem. 268, 20606-20612.

Dickie M. M. and Atkinson W. B. (1957) Increased sensitivity to estrogen in uterine hyperplasia in DBA x CE and reciprocal hybrid mice. Proc. Soc. Exp. Biol. Med. 96, 415-417.

Festing M. F. W. and Blackmore D. K. (1971) Life span of specified-pathogen-free (MRC category 4) mice and rats. Lab. Anim. 5, 179-192.

Gonnerman W. A., Kandel R., and Cathcart E. S. (1996) Amyloid enhancing factor is produced by rats and amyloid-resistant CE/J mice. Lab. Invest. 74, 259-264.

Hancock R. L. and Dickie M. M. (1969) Biochemical, pathological and genetic aspects of spontaneous mouse hepatoma. J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 43, 407-415.

Heiniger H. J., Taylor B. A., Hards E. J., and Meier H. (1975) Heritability of the phytohaemagglutinin responsiveness of lymphocytes and its relationship to leukemogenesis. Cancer Res. 35, 825-831.

Heston W. E. (1963) Genetics of neoplasia, in Methodology in mammalian genetics (Burdette W. J., ed), pp. 247-268. Holden-Day, San Francisco.

Hummel K. P., Richardson F. L., and Fekete E. (1966) Anatomy, in Biology of the Laboratory Mouse, 2nd. ed. (Green E. L., ed), pp. 247-307. McGraw-Hill, New York.

Jenkins N. A., Copeland N. G., Taylor B. A., and Lee B. K. (1982) Organization, distribution, and stability of endogenous ecotropic murine leukemia virus DNA sequences in chromosomes of Mus musculus. J. Virol. 43, 26-36.

Lovell D.P. (1986) Variation in pentobarbitone sleeping time in mice. I. strain and sex differences. Lab. Anim. 20, 85-90.

Lush I. E. and Arnold C. J. (1975) High coumarin 7-hydroxylase activity does not protect mice against Warfarin. Heredity 35, 279-281.

Lush I.M. (1988) The genetics of tasting in mice. VI. Saccharin, acesulfame, dulcin and sucrose. Genet. Res. 53, 95-99.

McCarthy M. M. and Dutton R. W. (1975) The humoral response of mouse spleen cells to two types of sheep erythrocytes. J. Immunol. 115, 1316-1321.

Meier H. and MacPike A. D. (1968) Levels and heritability of serum ceruloplasmin activity in inbred strains of mice. Proc. Soc. Exp. Biol. Med. 128, 1185-1190.

Murphy E. D. (1966) Characteristic tumors, in Biology of the laboratory mouse, 2nd. ed. (Green E. L., ed), pp. 521-562. McGraw-Hill, New York.

Schlager G. and Dickie M. M. (1967) Spontaneous mutations and mutation rates in the house mouse. Genetics 57, 319-330.

Sipe J. D., Carreras I., Gonnerman W. A., Cathcart E. S., De Beer M. C., and De Beer F. C. (1993) Characterization of the inbred CE/J mouse strain as amyloid resistant. Am. J. Pathol. 143, 1480-1485.

Taylor B. A. (1972) Genetic relationship between inbred strains of mice. J. Hered. 63, 83-86.

Tunnicliff G., Wimer C. C., and Wimer R. E. (1973) Relationships between neurotransmitter metabolism and behaviour in seven inbred strains of mice. Brain Res. 61, 428-434.

Updated 9 Apr. 1998
Michael FW Festing
MRC Toxicology Unit, Hodgkin Building,
University of Leicester, UK

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