Journal Article

Beneficial Effects of NTP-2000 Diet on Growth, Survival, and Kidney and Heart Diseases of Fischer 344 Rats in Chronic Studies

Ghanta N. Rao, Richard W. Morris and John C. Seely

in Toxicological Sciences

Volume 63, issue 2, pages 245-255
Published in print October 2001 | ISSN: 1096-6080
Published online October 2001 | e-ISSN: 1096-0929 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/toxsci/63.2.245
Beneficial Effects of NTP-2000 Diet on Growth, Survival, and Kidney and Heart Diseases of Fischer 344 Rats in Chronic Studies

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Diet is one of the most important environmental factors influencing growth, survival, and appearance of age-associated diseases in rodents. NIH-07 open formula rodent diet was the selected diet for the National Toxicology Program studies from 1980 to 1994. After a number of experimental diets were evaluated, a new one designated as NTP-2000 was selected for rodents in NTP studies beginning in 1994. This report summarizes the results of dosed feed and inhalation studies for differences in growth, survival, and severity of kidney and heart lesions in Fischer 344 rats fed NTP-2000 or NIH-07 diets. In the dosed feed studies, male rats group housed and fed the NTP-2000 diet grew slightly slower, attained maximum body weight later, and lost less body weight by the end of the 2-year studies compared to the groups fed NIH-07. Female rats group housed and fed the NTP-2000 diet in dosed feed studies had significantly slower growth, with lower maximum body weight compared to the groups fed the NIH-07 diet. In the inhalation studies, male rats individually housed and fed the NTP-2000 diet had slightly higher maximum body weight and significantly higher final body weight, with lower loss of weight when compared to similarly housed groups fed the NIH-07 diet. In inhalation studies, female rats fed the NTP-2000 diet and individually housed had significantly slower growth. The NTP-2000 diet significantly increased the survival of male and female rats, with a dramatic increase in survival of males in inhalation studies. This diet also caused significant decreases in severity of nephropathy and cardiomyopathy, and the decrease was marked in males. These observations indicate that diets balanced for nutrients, such as the NTP-2000, could markedly improve the health and increase survival of the rats used in chronic studies.

Keywords: diet; nephropathy; cardiomyopathy; body weight; survival; group housing; individual housing; Fischer 344 rat

Journal Article.  8113 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Toxicology ; Toxicology (Non-medical)

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