Protocols in Current Issue
    A Time Duration Discrimination Task for the Study of Elapsed Time Processing in Rats

    Space and time are both essential features of episodic memory. However, while spatial tasks have been used effectively to study the behavioral relevance of place cells, the behavioral paradigms utilized for the study of time cells have not used time duration as a variable that animals need to be aware of to solve the task. In order to evaluate how

    Dissociating Behavior and Spatial Working Memory Demands Using an H Maze
    Authors:  Hannah S. Wirtshafter, Moqing Quan and Matthew A. Wilson, date: 03/05/2021, view: 636, Q&A: 0

    The development of mazes for animal experiments has allowed for the investigation of cognitive maps and place cells, spatial working memory, naturalistic navigation, perseverance, exploration, and choice and motivated behavior. However, many mazes, such as the T maze, currently developed to test learning and memory, do not distinguish temporally

    The Peak Interval Procedure in Rodents: A Tool for Studying the Neurobiological Basis of Interval Timing and Its Alterations in Models of Human Disease
    Authors:  Fuat Balcı and David Freestone, date: 09/05/2020, view: 1038, Q&A: 0
    [Abstract] Animals keep track of time intervals in the seconds to minutes range with, on average, high accuracy but substantial trial-to-trial variability. The ability to detect the statistical signatures of such timing behavior is an indispensable feature of a good and theoretically-tractable testing procedure. A widely used interval timing procedure is the ...
    Sequential Reaching Task for the Study of Motor Skills in Monkeys
    Authors:  Machiko Ohbayashi and Nathalie Picard, date: 08/20/2020, view: 1013, Q&A: 0
    [Abstract] The ability to perform a sequence of movements is a key component of motor skills, such as typing or playing a musical instrument. How the brain binds elementary movements together into meaningful actions has been a topic of much interest. Here, we describe two sequential reaching tasks that we use to investigate the neural substrate of skilled ...
    Multiple Simultaneous Acute Stresses in Mice: Single or Repeated Induction
    [Abstract] Stress is crucial to the survival of an organism, but excessive stress can lead to psychological disorders including depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and suicidality. The prevailing notion is that chronic stress promotes adverse outcomes on brain and body health, whereas acute stressors are generally benign. Notably, acute events such mass ...
    The Discrete Paired-trial Variable-delay T-maze Task to Assess Working Memory in Mice
    Authors:  Gian Marco Leggio, Sebastiano Alfio Torrisi and Francesco Papaleo, date: 07/05/2020, view: 1339, Q&A: 0
    [Abstract] Working memory abnormalities involving the prefrontal cortex (PFC) dramatically contribute to poor functional outcomes in patients with schizophrenia and still represent an unmet therapeutic need. Studies in rodents might provide essential tools to understand the mechanisms underlying PFC-dependent working memory dysfunctions, as well as precious ...
    An Alternative Maze to Assess Novel Object Recognition in Mice
    [Abstract] The novel object recognition (NOR) task is a behavioral test commonly used to evaluate episodic-like declarative memory and it relies on the innate tendency of rodents to explore novelty. Here we present a maze used to evaluate NOR memory in mice that reduces the time of the assay while improving reliability of the measurements by increasing the ...
    Enriched Environment Procedures for Rodents: Creating a Standardized Protocol for Diverse Enrichment to Improve Consistency across Research Studies
    Authors:  Bruce C. Harland and John C. Dalrymple-Alford, date: 06/05/2020, view: 1205, Q&A: 0
    [Abstract] Exposure to environmental enrichment has beneficial effects on learning and memory, diverse neurobiological effects, and promotes recovery of function after brain injury. The effect of enrichment is produced by a combination of increased social interaction, physical activity, spatial complexity, and novelty. Procedures in the literature have, ...
    Protocol for Measuring Free (Low-stress) Exploration in Rats
    Authors:  Wojciech Pisula and Klaudia Modlinska, date: 01/20/2020, view: 1925, Q&A: 0
    [Abstract] Research on exploratory behavior plays a key part in behavioral science. Studying exploratory behavior of laboratory rodents may provide important data about many developmental and neurobiological processes occurring in animal ontogenesis. The proposed protocol for measuring the free (low-stress) exploration behavior in rats is straightforward, ...
    Trial-based Discrimination Procedure for Studying Drug Relapse in Rats
    [Abstract] In abstinent drug addicts, cues formerly associated with drug-taking experiences gain relapse-inducing potency (‘incubate’) over time. Animal models of incubation may help in developing treatments for relapse prevention. However, these models have primarily focused on the role of conditioned stimuli (CSs) signaling drug delivery and not ...

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