The value of comparative animal research: Krogh’s principle facilitates scientific discoveries

Stevenson, T. J. , Alward, B. A., Ebling, F. J. P., Fernald, R. D., Kelly, A. and Ophir, A. G. (2018) The value of comparative animal research: Krogh’s principle facilitates scientific discoveries. Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 5(1), pp. 118-125. (doi: 10.1177/2372732217745097)

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Abstract

Biomedical research is dominated by relatively few nonhuman animals to investigate healthy and disease conditions. Research has overrelied on these models due to their well-described genomes, the capability to control specific genes, and the high rate of reproduction. However, recent advances in large-scale molecular sequencing experiments have revealed, in some cases, the limited similarities in experimental outcomes observed in common rodents (i.e., mice) compared with humans. The value of more varied comparative animal models includes examples such as long-term body weight regulation in seasonally breeding hamsters as a means to help understand the obesity epidemic, vocal learning in songbirds to illuminate language acquisition and maintenance, and reproduction in cichlid fish to discover novel genes conserved in humans. Studying brain genes in prairie voles and cichlids advanced knowledge about social behavior. Taken together, experiments on diverse animal species highlight nontraditional systems for advancing our understanding of human health and well-being.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Tyler J. Stevenson has received funding from the Leverhulme Trust. Francis J. P. Ebling is in receipt of funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC; BB/M001555/1). The National Institutes of Health has funded Russell D. Fernald (NS 034950, NS093277, NIMH 087930), Alexander G. Ophir (HD079573, IOS-1354760), and Aubrey M. Kelly (HD081959). Beau A. Alward is an Arnold O. Beckman postdoctoral fellow.
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Stevenson, Dr Tyler
Authors: Stevenson, T. J., Alward, B. A., Ebling, F. J. P., Fernald, R. D., Kelly, A., and Ophir, A. G.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
Journal Name:Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Publisher:SAGE
ISSN:2372-7322
ISSN (Online):2372-7330
Published Online:21 December 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Authors
First Published:First published in Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences 5(1):118-125
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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