The local lymph node assay (LLNA), as recommended by the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods (ICCVAM), only allows for the use of CBA mice. The objective of these studies was to begin to assess the response of chemical sensitizers in the LLNA across six strains of female mice (C57BL/6, SJL/J, BALB/c, B6C3F1, DBA/2 and CBA). The moderate sensitizer alpha-hexylcinnamaldehyde (HCA) was chosen as the test chemical, while toluene diisocyanate (TDI) and 2,4-dinitrofluorobenzene (DNFB) were evaluated at single concentrations as positive controls. Draining lymph node cell proliferation following acetone exposure varied across strains. SJL mice had a significantly higher degree of proliferation with 2111 d.p.m./2 nodes. The remaining five strains demonstrated responses which ranged from 345 to 887 dpm/2 nodes. DBA/2, B6C3F1, BALB/c and CBA mice had essentially equal levels of lymph node proliferation following exposure to the three chemicals. While C57BL/6 mice gave similar results as CBA mice following DNFB and HCA administration, the LLNA response to TDI was considerably lower. SJL mice provided low stimulation indexes (SI) values for all three chemicals evaluated. Regardless of the level of LLNA response, all six mouse strains identified the sensitization potential of HCA, TDI or DNFB. Based on these studies, DBA/2, B6C3F1 and BALB/c mice are good choices for continued evaluation as additional mouse strains for use in the LLNA.
Health Effects Laboratory Division, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA