With an interest in type II diabetes and obesity, MRC Harwell has a range of sophisticated equipment for measuring metabolic states both in unchallenged mice and in cohorts under dietary control. Technical staff at Harwell are also trained in a range of tolerance tests (including glucose and insulin) and efficient blood-sampling for clinical chemistry.
Specialist caging is also available for calorimetry measurements, food and water intake and urine and faeces collection.
To determine the metabolic activity of the mice, it is necessary to measure this indirectly through recording changes in oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in a sealed cage containing a singly- housed mouse. This test can be done over one night or a number of nights, and can be done in conjunction with the measurement of other parameters that affect metabolism for example activity, food and water consumption, temperature and also looking at the effect of the circadian cycle on metabolism.