Mice Fail as Models of Human Inflammation: National Academy of Sciences

The Physicians Committee

Mice Fail as Models of Human Inflammation: National Academy of Sciences

February 13, 2013

Studies of inflammatory diseases in mice have been misleading researchers for years, according to a new study just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers analyzed data obtained from human patients who had suffered severe blunt trauma, burns, and sepsis (the body’s severe response to infection) and other inflammatory diseases. They found that the way in which humans respond to inflammation is “not reproduced in the current mouse models.” This could explain why more than 150 drugs that were tested in mice failed in patients with sepsis. The study’s authors concluded: “New approaches need to be explored to improve the ways that human diseases are studied.”

Seok J, Warren HS, Cuencac AG, et al. Genomic responses in mouse models poorly mimic human inflammatory disease. PNAS. Published online before print February 11, 2013.

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