Background: To investigate different responses to a high-fat/cholesterol diet and uncover their underlying genetic factors between C57BL/6J (B6) and DBA/2J (D2) inbred mice. Methods. B6 and D2 mice were fed a high-fat/cholesterol diet for a series of time-points. Serum and bile lipid profiles, bile acid yields, hepatic apoptosis, gallstones and atherosclerosis formation were measured. Furthermore, a whole genome microarray was performed to screen hepatic genes expression profile. Quantitative real-time PCR, western blot and TUNEL assay were conducted to validate microarray data. Results: After fed the high-fat/cholesterol diet, serum and bile total cholesterol, serum cholesterol esters, HDL cholesterol and Non-HDL cholesterol levels were altered in B6 but not significantly changed in D2; meanwhile, biliary bile acid was decreased in B6 but increased in D2. At the same time, hepatic apoptosis, gallstones and atherosclerotic lesions occurred in B6 but not in D2. The hepatic microarray analysis revealed distinctly different genes expression patterns between B6 and D2 mice. Their functional pathway groups included lipid metabolism, oxidative stress, immune/inflammation response and apoptosis. Quantitative real time PCR, TUNEL assay and western-blot results were consistent with microarray analysis. Conclusion: Different genes expression patterns between B6 and D2 mice might provide a genetic basis for their distinctive responses to a high-fat/cholesterol diet, and give us an opportunity to identify novel pharmaceutical targets in related diseases in the future.