? Resource The mouse has long served the scientific community as the mammalian model of choice for the study of human disease. Decades of work used mice to great success in the study of single gene mutations to better understand human biology and monogenic disorders. This compendium of work greatly advanced our understanding of gene function, but it was also long recognized that the genetics of human health was more complex than could be revealed by studying single genes in isolation. Fortunately, specialized mouse strains were developed to begin to dissect more complex genetics and as the ?omics? age emerged the mouse was developed into an even more powerful model for the study of genetics at the ?systems? level. Strains have been developed, and more are under development, which have ?human- like? genetic diversity. These strains, and their predecessors, provide an experimental avenue to modeling genetic complexity with an accuracy and confidence that allow findings to be translated to the clinic more rapidly. Over the years, a number of valuable resources have been created to study complex genetics. These resources range from inbred strains, hybrid mapping panels, classic Recombinant Inbred (RI) lines, and Chromosome Substitution (CS) strains, all the way to more recent strains such as the highly diverse Collaborative Cross (CC) and Diversity Outbred (DO) populations. The utility of these special mouse strains is entirely dependent upon getting consistently high-quality mice into the hands of researchers around the world. The Special Mouse Strains Resource (SMSR) at The Jackson Laboratory (JAX) has provided reliable, efficient access to these specialized strain panels for the scientific community and ensured their perpetuation though cryopreservation. The SMSR is unique in its ability to provide high health status facilities with streamlined order management and short delivery times. As importantly, the SMSR continues, to work closely with the complex trait community to evolve its resources and to provide access to large-scale mouse breeding and housing capacity to support collaborative research projects. The SMSR will continue to provide this high-quality resource through the following aims:
Aim 1 - SMSR will actively distribute as well as archive specialized mouse strains and related resources for complex trait analysis.
Aim 2 - SMSR will maintain complete and accessible strain information and informatics resources for SMSR strains.
Aim 3 - SMSR will evaluate new and existing resource needs.

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Jackson Laboratory
Bar Harbor
United States
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Murray, Stephen A; Morgan, Judith L; Kane, Coleen et al. (2010) Mouse gestation length is genetically determined. PLoS One 5:e12418