Mouse models of cancer: does the strain matter?

Nat Rev Cancer. 2012 Jan 19;12(2):144-9. doi: 10.1038/nrc3206.


Mouse models are indispensible tools for understanding the molecular basis of cancer. However, despite the invaluable data provided regarding tumour biology, owing to inbreeding, current mouse models fail to accurately model human populations. Polymorphism is the essential characteristic that makes each of us unique humans, with different disease susceptibility, presentation and progression. Therefore, as we move closer towards designing clinical treatment that is based on an individual's unique biological makeup, it is imperative that we understand how inherited variability influences cancer phenotypes, how it can confound experiments and how it can be exploited to reveal new truths about cancer biology.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Mice
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / genetics*
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / pathology
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Species Specificity