The Neurodevelopmental Behavior Core (NBC) was designed to provide a time-efficient and cost-effective service for the comprehensive characterization of complex behaviors in mouse models of neurodevelopmental disorders, and for testing novel therapeutic drugs and interventions in mouse models of these human disorders. The NBC provides the necessary equipment, protocols and technical support for studying neurodevelopmental disorders, focusing not just on “snapshots” but changes in developmental milestones over time. The Core is equipped to perform extensive batteries of behavior tests that phenotype specific social, emotional and cognitive behaviors, as well as motor, auditory and visual function, together with measures of the general health of the animals. This behavior facility also provides a unique opportunity for training fellows, graduate and undergraduate students as well as PIs.
The NBC is available for use by BCH and non-BCH scientists.
We have the capability to record sleep and wakefulness using EEG and EMG. Mice are housed in regular home cages and the sleep/wake activity measured using a telemetered (DSI) system or in open field arenas using a tethered system.
Facility houses two of these instruments.
Whole Body Plethysmograph chambers enable researchers to monitor breaths-per-Minute (BPM), Tidal Volume, Minute Volume, Inspiratory time, Expiratory time, Pause and PenH from unrestrained animals.
SHIRPA is an acronym of SmithKline Beecham, Harwell, Imperial College, Royal London Hospital, phenotype assessment), proposed in 1997 by a group of researchers from a number of British institutions and the pharmaceutical company, SmithKline Beecham. There are up to 40 tests in SHIRPA, across three screens of increasing complexity and specialization. The first describes the behaviour of the mouse subject by observation. The second involves a more thorough behavioural assessment and includes pathological analysis. The third screening stage is focused on potential animal models of neurological disease. -- Wikipedia
Auditory brain stem responses
Ultrasonic vocalisation detection
Home cage activity
Operant behavior touchscreens
Morris water maze
Novel object recognition
Elevated plus maze
Chronic mild stress
Thermal place preference
Dynamic weight bearing
Whole body plethysmography
EEG: juvenile (tethered) and adult (telemetry)
Visual water task
The Core has 6 licences to acquire data using the latest version (11.5) of Ethovision XT. There is a disk that can be copied by users of The Core to install the analysis software onto their own pc in order to analyse data. This does not enable data acquisition. Furthermore this program does not work on Mac computers so data analysis must be done on a windows pc.
The Core has a Platinum Service contract with Noldus Information Technology so users may contact Noldus at anytime to discuss problems with data acquisition or analysis.