Donate a Strain

The Jackson Laboratory is committed to providing the biomedical research community with practical tools to aid in the shared quest for understanding human disease. Donating your strain to JAX fulfills NIH obligations to share mice with other scientists, while significantly reducing the cost of maintaining your mouse models.

Donate a strain

Benefits of Strain Donation

  • Reduces costs associated with colony maintenance, lab personnel, shipping and resources
  • Protects against accidental loss and genetic contamination achieved through cryopreservation
  • Rederivation of each imported strain to a high health status is performed and may be resupplied to the donating investigator
  • Fulfills NIH obligations to share research mice to scientific community

Distribution of your strain by the JAX Repository

There are two ways to submit your strain to The Jackson Laboratory- through donation into the JAX Repository, or privately via our Strain Distribution Service. All JAX Repository strains are available for the entire scientific community, making distribution of your strains easy. To share your strains with your trusted colleagues, our Strain Distribution Service may be a better option. For consideration of those strains to be included in our Repository, submissions by investigators for distribution are evaluated monthly by the Genetic Resource Committee (GRC). The GRC is made up of staff scientists and resource managers from The Jackson Laboratory, who recommend which strains are most appropriate to include in the Repository. You will be notified by email after your strain has been reviewed. If your mouse is successfully reviewed, the only cost associated with strain donation is that of shipping mice to JAX.

JAX® Sponsored Strain Distribution Service

If you or the GRC Committee decide that your strain is not appropriate to include in the JAX Repository, you can benefit from the Sponsored Strain Distribution Service to distribute your strain to collaborators of your choice.

Frequently Asked Questions

When should I submit my strain for evaluation by the GRC?

  • To ensure that your strain is evaluated at the next month's meeting, please submit your strain no later than the 3rd Wednesday of the month. You will be notified after your strain has been reviewed by email.

My strain was accepted for donation to The Jackson Laboratory. Will I receive mice once they’ve been imported into TJL’s facility?

Upon acceptance of the DI’s strain, we will import the strain and determine whether to maintain it initially as a breeding colony or to cryopreserve it.  This determination is based on information from you, the DI, and advice from internal and external scientific advisory committees.

  • We may provide the Donating Investigator (DI) up to three pairs, or six mice, of the line donated, at no charge (shipping costs are to be paid by the DI), as long as the line is maintained as a live (on the shelf) colony.
  • If the strain is accepted for Cryopreservation Only, the DI must decide whether or not he/she wants free mice upon the Lab's acceptance of the strain. Once the strain is cryopreserved, the DI will be charged a recovery cost.   Mice may be shipped to a destination of choice, EXCEPT to third parties for resale.

What information must I provide when donating my strain?

  • Provide The Jackson Laboratory with accurate information on the strain.
  • Provide the Lab the number and genotype of mice requested for importation in a timely manner.
  • Review the initial text description of the strain and return it to the designated contact.
  • Incur costs associated with shipping of mice and materials to The Jackson Laboratory. 
  • Encourage investigators seeking mice submitted to the repository, to register their interest in new strains under development online or calling Customer Service at 800-422-6423 or 207-288-5845.
  • Up-to-date information, including new publications using the strain. Information on initiatives that could lead to potential increase in demand is also appreciated.