germ-free animal


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germ-free animal

a laboratory animal raised under sterile conditions, free of exposure to microorganisms. The diet is controlled, preventing exposure to microorganisms that may be in food. The germ-free animals have lymphoid tissue that is not fully developed and may have a deficiency of serum immunoglobulin.
References in periodicals archive ?
And when Turnbaugh transplanted gut bacteria from obese to germ-free animals, the germ-free animals gained twice as much body fat than if the transplants came from lean animals.
One way to explore the significance of bacteria to the mammalian supraorganism is to look at germ-free animals since they have to go it alone without a microbial community to support them.