The obese gene is expressed in lean littermates of the genetically obese mouse (C57BL/6J ob/ob)

Edwin W. Haller, Lorentz E. Wittmers, Irina V Haller, Ronald R. Regal

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3 Scopus citations


Some individuals of the mixed group of 'lean' littermates (+/ob and +/+) of (C57BL/6J ob/oh) often suggest phenotypic characteristics of ob/ob animals. Therefore, it was of interest to determine whether expression of the ob gene had physiological significance in +/ob animals. Body weight (BW), fasting blood glucose (FBG), and body core temperature (T(r)) were monitored between 62 and 364 days of age in +/+ and +/ob mice. Among females but not males, +/ob mice were heavier (P = 0.003) and FBG levels were greater (P = 0.04) than in +/+ animals. Comparison of T(r) indicated differences suggesting falling T(r) in +/ob but rising T(r) in +/+ mice with age in males but not females. Multivariate analysis of variance yielded genotype effects for both males (P = 0.002) and females (P = 0.02). BW, FBG, and T(r) alone were sufficient at the 75% level for genotypic characterization and separation of +/? animals as +/ob or +/+; clearly, expression of the ob gene in heterozygotes of the +/ob animal may make the mixed +/? group inappropriate as lean controls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E762-E765
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number4 39-4
StatePublished - Apr 1999


  • Genetic obesity
  • Ob gene product
  • Ob/ob experimental controls
  • Phenotypic differentiation


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