New stocks of mice carrying the autosomal recessive gene, retinal degeneration (rd), have been developed and are characterized in this report. The aim was to generate mutant and control mice that are (1) littermates, (2) distinguishable by linked marker gene(s) prior to recognizable phenotypic expression of the mutation, and (3) nearly identical at all genetic loci outside the chromosomal segment bearing rd and the marker mutations. C57BL/6J congenic strains carrying the linked genes rd, light ear (le), and viable dominant spotting (W ) meet these criteria. The recombination percentages between these loci and their probable order is Wv-12-rd-1-le. The rd and le phenotypes on the C57BL/6J background appear not to interact with respect to expression of the photoreceptor cell degeneration. A comparison is given of the advantages and disadvantages of several breeding schemes for propagating the rd and related genes.
LaVail MM, Sidman RL. C57BL/6J Mice With inherited Retinal Degeneration. Arch Ophthalmol. 1974;91(5):394–400. doi:10.1001/archopht.1974.03900060406015