This article is from the WSSF 2007 AFRMA Rat & Mouse Tales news-magazine.
By Karen Robbins
Q I’m trying to find exact mineral requirements for caged mice. Any ideas? Also, what is the protein requirements for reproducing mice?
A According to Laboratory Animal Medicine, the nutrient requirements of mice, which includes minerals and protein, are listed in table I below. As far as making your own diet, Carmen Jane Booth, D.V.M., Ph.D., cautions, “Trying to calculate and formulate a diet with specific amounts of trace minerals can be fraught with difficulties and there is the risk of causing more harm than good by having the wrong ration of calcium to phosphorus or too much or too little of the other minerals.”
As far as protein requirements for reproducing mice, in the book Nutrient Requirements of Laboratory Animals, depending on the mouse strain, the amount varies from 16.7% to 24% (see table 2). For growth, the requirements are 14–20%. Of course the content and digestibility of amino acids in the food, and the maximum growth potential of the mice being fed needs to be taken into account.
This book also states that the mouse has similar nutrient requirements (including trace minerals) as the rat so the established requirements for the rat can be used for the mouse.
The best diets are lab blocks as they have been formulated to meet all the dietary needs of the species being fed. Seed diets, if fed alone, do not provide the proper balance of nutrients and can lead to obesity and nutritional deficiencies along with other health problems.
Nutrient Requirements of Micea
According to Laboratory Animal Medicine
|Nutrient||Concentration in a diet (%)|
|Protein (as crude protein)||20–25|
|Estimated Dietary Amino Acid Requirement|
|Mineral and Vitamin Concentrations of Adequate Mouse Diets|
|K1 equiv. (mg/kg)||3||0.05||18||10.7|
|Calcium pantothenate (mg/kg)||21||16||37.5||47.5|
|Vitamin B6 (mg/kg)||10||7||22.5||6.0|
|Vitamin B12 (mg/kg)||0.03||0.01||0.023||0.58|
a Modified from Knapka (1983).
b Linoleic acid: 0.6% is adequate.
c John and Bell (1976)
d Theuer (1971)
e Knapka et al. (1974)
f AIN 76 (1977)
g Hurley and Bell (1974)
h Pleasants et al. (1973)
Table 2. From Nutrient Requirements of Laboratory Animals.
|Protein Requirements for Reproduction for
Various Strains of Mice
Laboratory Animal Medicine, Editors: James G. Fox, Bennett J. Cohen, Franklin M. Loew, 1984. Academic Press, Inc., Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, publishers, San Diego, California. ISBN 0-12-263620-1.
Nutrient Requirements of Laboratory Animals, Fourth Revised Edition, 1995, by the National Research Council, ISBN 0-309-05126-6.
Go to the Nutritional Requirements in Rats article