Rats have been used extensively as animal models to study physiological and pathological processes involved in human diseases. Numerous rat strains have been selectively bred for certain biological traits related to specific medical interests. Recently, the Rat Genome Database (http://rgd.mcw.edu) has initiated the PhenoMiner project to integrate quantitative phenotype data from the PhysGen Program for Genomic Applications and the National BioResource Project in Japan as well as manual annotations from biomedical literature. PhenoMiner, the search engine for these integrated phenotype data, facilitates mining of data sets across studies by searching the database with a combination of terms from four different ontologies/vocabularies (Rat Strain Ontology, Clinical Measurement Ontology, Measurement Method Ontology and Experimental Condition Ontology). In this study, salt-induced hypertension was used as a model to retrieve blood pressure records of Brown Norway, Fawn-Hooded Hypertensive (FHH) and Dahl salt-sensitive (SS) rat strains. The records from these three strains served as a basis for comparing records from consomic/congenic/mutant offspring derived from them. We examined the cardiovascular and renal phenotypes of consomics derived from FHH and SS, and of SS congenics and mutants. The availability of quantitative records across laboratories in one database, such as these provided by PhenoMiner, can empower researchers to make the best use of publicly available data.
Database URL: http://rgd.mcw.edu