Highlights for the Research Involving the Lactation Period in Laboratory Rats

Yılmaz C., Engür D., Keskinoğlu P., Kumral A., Yılmaz O.

laboratory rats. Journal of Laboratory Animal Science and Practices, vol.3, no.2, pp.45-50, 2023 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


Lactation is an important period in newborn nutrition since nutritional factors in the early stages of development have life-long impacts. Lactation provides various important long-lasting health benefits to the offspring. The lactation period, however, provides much more than just nutrients. The composition and quantity of nutrients in breast milk are not the only factors that can influence offsprings during breastfeeding. Maternal behaviors to nourish and protect her litters during lactation are also important in programing. The current study attempted to focus on specific characteristics of the breastfeeding period, such as changes in food consumption, mother’s weight, and the time dams spend lactating with or without pups. A deeper understanding of this critical period will allow for designing better pediatric models including maternal separation, artificial rearing, and studies covering maternal manipulations. Keywords: Lactation period, maternal care, milk, mother rats, newborn