Measurement of Fecal Testosterone Metabolites in Mice: Replacement of Invasive Techniques

Testosterone is the main reproductive hormone in male vertebrates and conventional methods to measure testosterone rely on invasive blood sampling procedures. Here, we aimed to establish a non-invasive alternative by assessing testosterone metabolites (TMs) in fecal and urinary samples in mice. We performed a radiometabolism study to determine the effects of daytime and sex on […]

Long-lasting, selective, anxiogenic effects of feline predator stress in mice

Lasting increases in anxiety-like behavior (ALB) are produced by brief exposure of rats to a cat [Adamec RE, Shallow T, Lasting effects on rodent anxiety of a single exposure to a cat, Physiol. Behav., 54 (1993) 101–109.]. Mice also respond defensively to natural predator stimuli. Moreover, chronic exposure of mice to rat odor has immediate […]

Early behavioural enrichment in the form of handling renders mouse pups unresponsive to anxiolytic drugs and increases NGF levels in the hippocampus

Early life experiences, such as early handling, can influence neural development of rodents leading to changes in physiological and behavioural reactivity to stress. These effects are likely to be mediated by changes in maternal behaviour. This study analyzed the effects of different manipulations of the rearing environment on maternal behaviour and the behavioural and physiological […]

The Physiological and Behavioral Impact of Sensory Contact Among Unfamiliar Adult Mice in the Laboratory

Housing mice in the laboratory in groups enables social interaction and is the way a laboratory should house mice. However, adult males show reciprocal aggression and are therefore frequently housed individually. Alternatively, a grid divider, which allows sensory contact by sight and smell but prevents fighting and injuries, can separate mice within 1 cage. This […]

Complex Environmental Enrichment and Spatial Reference Memory in Middle-Aged Mice

The effect of different forms of continuous environmental enrichment on the spatial reference memory of 22 middle-aged female CB57BL/6 mice was examined. All mice were socially housed in either standard (social enrichment only) or complex enriched (social and environmental enrichment) cages for 7 weeks. Enhanced spatial memory as tested on the Barnes Maze was observed […]

Activity patterns as a correlate for sleep–wake behaviour in mice

Sleep–wake behaviour in mice is known to interact with various behavioural dimensions. Therefore, it is necessary to control for such dimensions when evaluating sleep in mice. The characterisation of sleep in rodents usually is based on EEG signals. Since this method demands the invasive implantation of electrodes, it cannot be integrated into general behavioural phenotyping […]

Tests for emotionality in rats and mice: A review

This paper examines the concept of emotionality, particularly in relation to measures taken in ‘novel environment’ tests (e.g. the open field). Evidence of several different types is reviewed to assess the validity of the measures in relation to common assumptions underlying their use. In response to increased light and noise, open field defecation increases and […]

Reorganization of behaviour in laboratory mice,Mus musculus, with varying cost of access to resources

Gaining access to resources can be measured in terms of the time spent with, or the number of visits to, a resource. For some resources, time spent with the resource might be more important, for others the number of visits might be more meaningful. By using traverses of shallow water, the costs of gaining access […]

The motivation of group-housed laboratory mice, Mus musculus, for additional space

The limited amount of space that we provide for research animals can adversely influence the validity of behavioural data and animal welfare. Consumer demand studies have examined the strength of motivation that animals have for additional space; however, one problem of these studies is that the animals tested were generally of a gregarious species, but […]

Behavioural demand functions of caged laboratory mice for additional space

The importance of a commodity, as perceived by animals, can be determined by measuring the amount of work animals are prepared to perform to gain access to that commodity. In the present study, this method is extended to establish how animals perceive the importance of increasing amounts of one commodity, that is, additional space. The […]