The Aged Rodent Tissue Bank is a cost-effective resource for aging research---a note of scientific interest

The National Institute on Aging (NIA), one of the institutes of the National Institutes of Health USA, has long provided biological resources to the biogerontology community to foster research on aging. The NIA established the Aged Rodent Tissue Bank (ARTB) as a source of fresh-frozen and fixed tissues suitable for multiple experimental protocols for research labs across the country. The ARTB is maintained under contractual arrangement by the University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

Several tissues are collected from mice and rats at ages ranging from young to old. All animal colonies are maintained in barrier facilities under specific pathogen free conditions. At the time of collection, tissues are flash-frozen and stored at -80°C, rendering them suitable for molecular and biological protocols and some cytochemical procedures. The ARTB also offers formalin- or ethanol-fixed tissues that can be used for a variety of staining procedures. Tissue microarrays (TMAs) on glass slides, representing different tissues/ages, will be available through the ARTB in the near future.

The ARTB currently has an inventory of over 33,000 cryopreserved tissues from C57BL/6 and Balb/cBy mice, and Fisher 344 and Brown Norway rats, plus F1 hybrids of the respective species: CB6F1 and FBNF1. Several age cohorts are represented, including four, 12, 18, 24, and 32 month-old mice, and four, 12, 18, 24, and 28-month old rats. Limited tissue inventory is available from past collections of calorically restricted animals of the above strains as well as from B6D2F1 mice. Tissues from the ARTB are available to investigators at academic and nonprofit research institutions who are engaged in funded research on aging. For more details and to request tissues, please visit the website:

The ARTB represents a cost-effective way to access tissues from a wide range of ages of inbred strains of mice and rats commonly used in aging research thereby alleviating the need to maintain live animals.

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