Mice provide an experimental model of unparalleled flexibility for studying mammalian diseases. Inbred strains of mice exhibit substantial differences in their susceptibility to the renal complications of diabetes. Much remains to be established regarding the course of diabetic nephropathy (DN) in mice as well as defining those strains and/or mutants that are most susceptible to renal injury from diabetes. Through the use of the unique genetic reagents available in mice (including knockouts and transgenics), the validation of a mouse model reproducing human DN should significantly facilitate the understanding of the underlying genetic mechanisms that contribute to the development of DN. Establishment of an authentic mouse model of DN will undoubtedly facilitate testing of translational diagnostic and therapeutic interventions in mice before testing in humans.