Genetic variance of laboratory outbred Swiss mice

Nature. 1980 Jan 10;283(5743):157-61. doi: 10.1038/283157a0.


The extent of allelic variation has been estimated at 46 structural gene loci within three major colonies of Swiss mice and between inbred derivative strains. The colonies have retained nearly the same amount and type of variation found in natural murine or human populations despite laboratory propagation for more than 50 years (175 generations). The population genetic structures of the Swiss mouse colonies were comparable to an island population in which random fixation, and not inbreeding or population bottlenecks, is apparently responsible for slight losses in genetic variance.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Animals
  • Animals, Laboratory / genetics*
  • Animals, Wild / genetics
  • Enzymes / genetics
  • Gene Frequency
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Mice / genetics*


  • Enzymes