The Tight Skin mouse is a genetically induced animal model of tissue fibrosis caused by a large in-frame mutation in the gene encoding fibrillin-1 (Fbn-1). We examined the influence of gender on the collagen content of tissues in C57BL/6J wild type (+/+) and mutant Tight Skin (Tsk/+) mice employing hydroxyproline assays. Tissue sections were stained with Masson's trichrome to identify collagen in situ. Adult Tsk/+ mice skin contains ~15% more collagen, on average, than skin from +/+ mice of the same gender. The heart of Tsk/+ males had significantly more collagen than that of +/+ males. No significant gender differences were found in lungs and kidney collagen content. Overall, the collagen content of Tsk/+ males and +/+ males was higher than that of their Tsk/+ and +/+ female counterparts, respectively. Our data confirm increased deposition of collagen in skin and hearts of Tsk/+ mice; however, the effects of the Tsk mutation on collagen content are both tissue specific and gender specific. These results indicate that comparative studies of collagen content between normal and Tsk/+ mice skin and internal organs must take into account gender differences caused by expression of the androgen receptor.
Manne, Jayanthi; Markova, Marina; Siracusa, Linda D; and Jimenez, Sergio A, "Collagen Content in Skin and Internal Organs of the Tight Skin Mouse: An Animal Model of Scleroderma." (2013). Department of Microbiology and Immunology Faculty Papers. Paper 52.