Comparing phenotypic variation between inbred and outbred mice

Nat Methods. 2018 Dec;15(12):994-996. doi: 10.1038/s41592-018-0224-7.


Inbred mice are preferred over outbred mice with the assumption that they display less trait variability. We compared coefficients of variation and failed to find evidence of greater trait stability in inbred mice. We conclude that contrary to conventional wisdom, outbred mice may be better subjects for most biomedical research.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Variation, Population*
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Mice, Mutant Strains