Behavioral assays in the mouse can show marked differences between male and female animals of a given genotype. These differences identified in such preclinical studies may have important clinical implications. We recently made a mouse model with impaired presynaptic inhibition through Gβγ-SNARE signaling. Here, we examine the role of sexual dimorphism in the severity of the phenotypes of this model, the SNAP25Δ3 mouse. In males, we already reported that SNAP25Δ3 homozygotes demonstrated phenotypes in motor coordination, nociception, spatial memory and stress processing. We now report that while minimal sexually dimorphic effects were observed for the nociceptive, motor or memory phenotypes, large differences were observed in the stress-induced hyperthermia paradigm, with male SNAP25Δ3 homozygotes exhibiting an increase in body temperature subsequent to handling relative to wild-type littermates, while no such genotype-dependent effect was observed in females. This suggests sexually dimorphic mechanisms of Gβγ-SNARE signaling for stress processing or thermoregulation within the mouse. Second, we examined the effects of heterozygosity with respect to the SNAP25Δ3 mutation. Heterozygote SNAP25Δ3 animals were tested alongside homozygote and wild-type littermates in all of the aforementioned paradigms and displayed phenotypes similar to wild-type animals or an intermediate state. From this, we conclude that the SNAP25Δ3 mutation does not behave in an autosomal dominant manner, but rather displays incomplete dominance for many phenotypes.
© 2020 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.