Mice

1. Anesthetize the mouse as in Subheading 2.2. Place the animal ventral (abdomen) side up on the lid of a 9-cm glass or plastic Petri dish.

2. Spray the lower abdomen with 70%, (v/v) ethanol. Comb the hair away from the proposed site of incision (see Fig. 1A) with a pair of fine forceps.

3. Lift the skin away from the body wall with a pair of fine, blunt forceps. Make a 1-cm transverse cut—level with the top of the hindlimbs (Fig. 1A)—with a pair of fine dissecting scissors. To reduce bleeding, stretch the incision to about 1.5 cm with the outer edges of the opened scissors.

4. Cut the body wall parallel to the skin cut. Again, stretch the incision.

5. Introduce a single stitch into one side of the body wall wound and leave in place.

6. Pull out the fat pad on one side of the animal and with it the testis, epididymis, and vas deferens (Fig. 1B) using blunt forceps.

7. Identify the vas deferens (Fig. 1B; held by left forceps). The vas deferens links the epididymis to the penis. It is rigid with a blood vessel running alongside it. Free the vas deferens from the surrounding membranes using fine forceps and scissors (Fig. 1C,D). The vas deferens is clearly seen against the black background (Fig. 1E).

8. Hold the vas deferens in a loop with a pair of forceps. Heat a pair of blunt forceps until glowing red. Grip the vas deferens loop with the hot forceps to burn away the tube and cauterize the ends (Fig. 2).

9. Separate the cauterized ends.

10. Return the organs into the body cavity with a pair of blunt forceps.

11. Repeat with the other side of the reproductive tract.

12. Sew up the body wall with two or more stitches.

13. Clip the skin with two wound clips.

14. Allow the animal to recover in a warm quiet place.

15. Cage the vasectomized males individually. Allow a few weeks for full recovery before using the animal to produce pseudopregnant recipient females.

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