Summary of Core Facilities

Cognitive Function

Object Recognition

Object Placement

Social Discrimination Memory

Spontaneous Alternation

• Morris Water Maze

• Sensorimotor gaiting

• Radial Arm Maze

• Conditioned Taste Aversion

Labyrinth Maze

Affective / Emotional Behaviors

Social Interaction

Social Preference

Transmission of Food Preferences

Reproductive and mating behavior

Open Field

Marble Burying

Elevated Plus Maze

• Light/Dark Box

• Acoustic Startle

Porsolt (Forced Swim) Test

Maternal behavior

Novelty Supression of Feeding



Tests of Analgesia

Von Frey

Cold Tail Flick


Sensorimotor Function

Open Field


Grip Strength

• Gait analysis and toe spread

Balance Beam

• Visual Placing

• Visual Cliff

• Pupil dilation

Tape removal test



Functional Observation Battery

Estrous Cycle Staging

• Behavioral Tracking software

• Conditioned Place Preference

• Grooming

• Stereotypies

Developmental milestones (pups)

Homing (pups)

Play (juvenile)


Elevated Plus Maze

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This assay essentially determines a preference between a comparatively safe and comofrtable environment (the closed arms ) and a risky enviornment (elevated open spaces). The general principle is that the more “anxious” the subjects are, the less likely they will be to explore a risky or threatening envionment. The EPM has been validated pharmacologically, ethologically and with other tests of anxiety-like behaviors and physiologically [1-31]. The animal is generally placed in one of the closed arms to start. The number of entries into each portion of the EPM (open and closed) are scored in addition to the total time spent in each portion.

1. Anseloni, V.Z. and M.L. Brandao, Ethopharmacological analysis of behaviour of rats using variations of the elevated plus-maze. Behav Pharmacol, 1997. 8(6-7): p. 533-40.

2. Carobrez, A.P. and L.J. Bertoglio, Ethological and temporal analyses of anxiety-like behavior: The elevated plus-maze model 20 years on. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 2005. 29(8): p. 1193.

3. Carola, V., et al., Evaluation of the elevated plus-maze and open-field tests for the assessment of anxiety-related behaviour in inbred mice. Behavioural Brain Research, 2002. 134(1-2): p. 49.

4. Cruz, A.P., F. Frei, and F.G. Graeff, Ethopharmacological analysis of rat behavior on the elevated plus-maze. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 1994. 49(1): p. 171-6.

5. Dawson, G.R. and M.D. Tricklebank, Use of the elevated plus maze in the search for novel anxiolytic agents. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences, 1995. 16(2): p. 33.

6. Dere, E., et al., The graded anxiety test: a novel test of murine unconditioned anxiety based on the principles of the elevated plus-maze and light-dark test. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 2002. 122(1): p. 65.

7. Espejo, E.F., Structure of the mouse behaviour on the elevated plus-maze test of anxiety. Behavioural Brain Research, 1997. 86(1): p. 105.

8. Fernandez Espejo, E., Structure of the mouse behaviour on the elevated plus-maze test of anxiety. Behav Brain Res, 1997. 86(1): p. 105-12.

9. File, S.E., et al., Raised corticosterone in the rat after exposure to the elevated plus-maze. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 1994. 113(3-4): p. 543-6.

10. Garcia, A.M., F.P. Cardenas, and S. Morato, Effect of different illumination levels on rat behavior in the elevated plus-maze. Physiol Behav, 2005. 85(3): p. 265-70.

11. Goto, S.H., et al., Comparison of anxiety measured in the elevated plus-maze, open-field and social interaction tests between spontaneously hypertensive rats and Wistar EPM-1 rats. Braz J Med Biol Res, 1993. 26(9): p. 965-9.

12. Griebel, G., et al., Risk Assessment Behaviour: Evaluation of Utility in the Study of 5-HT-Related Drugs in the Rat Elevated Plus-Maze Test. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, 1997. 57(4): p. 817.

13. Griebel, G., et al., Behavioural profiles in the mouse defence test battery suggest anxiolytic potential of 5-HT(1A) receptor antagonists. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 1999. 144(2): p. 121-30.

14. Hogg, S., A review of the validity and variability of the Elevated Plus-Maze as an animal model of anxiety. Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, 1996. 54(1): p. 21.

15. Holmes, A., et al., Behavioral profile of wild mice in the elevated plus-maze test for anxiety. Physiology & Behavior, 2000. 71(5): p. 509.

16. Kulkarni, S.K. and A.C. Sharma, Elevated plus-maze: a novel psychobehavioral tool to measure anxiety in rodents. Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol, 1991. 13(8): p. 573-7.

17. Mulder, G.B. and K. Pritchett, The elevated plus-maze. Contemp Top Lab Anim Sci, 2004. 43(2): p. 39-40.

18. Pellow, S., et al., Validation of open:closed arm entries in an elevated plus-maze as a measure of anxiety in the rat. J Neurosci Methods, 1985. 14(3): p. 149-67.

19. Pellow, S. and S.E. File, Anxiolytic and anxiogenic drug effects on exploratory activity in an elevated plus-maze: a novel test of anxiety in the rat. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 1986. 24(3): p. 525-9.

20. Rodgers, R.J. and J.C. Cole, Anxiety enhancement in the murine elevated plus maze by immediate prior exposure to social stressors. Physiol Behav, 1993. 53(2): p. 383-8.

21. Rodgers, R.J., et al., Ethopharmacological analysis of the effects of putative 'anxiogenic' agents in the mouse elevated plus-maze. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 1995. 52(4): p. 805-13.

22. Rodgers, R.J. and A. Dalvi, Anxiety, defence and the elevated plus-maze. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 1997. 21(6): p. 801.

23. Rodgers, R.J., et al., Corticosterone response to the plus-maze: high correlation with risk assessment in rats and mice. Physiol Behav, 1999. 68(1-2): p. 47-53.

24. Rodgers, R.J. and N.J. Johnson, Factor analysis of spatiotemporal and ethological measures in the murine elevated plus-maze test of anxiety. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 1995. 52(2): p. 297-303.

25. Roy, V. and P. Chapillon, Further evidences that risk assessment and object exploration behaviours are useful to evaluate emotional reactivity in rodents. Behav Brain Res, 2004. 154(2): p. 439-48.

26. Schmitt, U. and C. Hiemke, Combination of open field and elevated plus-maze: A suitable test battery to assess strain as well as treatment differences in rat behavior. Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, 1998. 22(7): p. 1197.

27. Tambour, S., et al., Dissociation between the locomotor and anxiolytic effects of acetaldehyde in the elevated plus-maze: Evidence that acetaldehyde is not involved in the anxiolytic effects of ethanol in mice. Eur Neuropsychopharmacol, 2005.

28. Treit, D., J. Menard, and C. Royan, Anxiogenic stimuli in the elevated plus-maze. Pharmacol Biochem Behav, 1993. 44(2): p. 463-9.

29. Wall, P.M. and C. Messier, Ethological confirmatory factor analysis of anxiety-like behaviour in the murine elevated plus-maze. Behavioural Brain Research, 2000. 114(1-2): p. 199.

30. Wall, P.M. and C. Messier, Methodological and conceptual issues in the use of the elevated plus-maze as a psychological measurement instrument of animal anxiety-like behavior. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 2001. 25(3): p. 275.

31. Weiss, S.M., et al., Utility of ethological analysis to overcome locomotor confounds in elevated maze models of anxiety. Neurosci Biobehav Rev, 1998. 23(2): p. 265-71.