Laboratory of Animal Behavior

Bogotá, Colombia

Laboratory of Animal Behavior

Bogotá, Colombia
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Sorregotti T.,Paulista University | Sorregotti T.,São Paulo State University | Mendes-Gomes J.,Paulista University | Rico J.L.,Paulista University | And 5 more authors.
Behavioural Brain Research | Year: 2013

Exposure of rodents to an open elevated plus-maze (oEPM) elicits antinociception and increases plasma corticosterone levels. However, no studies have yet assessed the defensive behaviour repertoire of animals in this modified test. In Experiment 1, factor analysis was employed to characterise the behavioural profile of mice exposed to the oEPM. Experiments 2 and 3 assessed the effects of acute alprazolam (0.5-1.5. mg/kg; diazepam 0.5-1.5. mg/kg), pentylenetetrazole (10.0-30.0. mg/kg), yohimbine (2.0-6.0. mg/kg), mCPP (0.3-3.0. mg/kg), and acute and chronic fluoxetine (10.0-30.0. mg/kg) and imipramine (1.0-15.0. mg/kg) on behaviours identified in Experiment 1. The factor analyses revealed that behaviour in the oEPM can largely (77% total variance) be accounted for in terms of 3 factors: factor 1 ('. depth exploration'; e.g. head-dipping on the arms), factor 2 ('. cautious exploration of arms'; e.g. flatback approach), and factor 3 ('. risk assessment'; stretched attend postures - SAP). Experiments 2 and 3 showed that, over the dose range used, alprazolam selectively attenuated all measures of defensiveness. Similar, though more modest, effects were seen with diazepam. Confirming the intensity of the emotional response to the oEPM (nociceptive, endocrine and behavioural), relatively few significant behavioural changes were seen in response to the anxiogenic compounds tested. Although acute fluoxetine or imipramine treatment failed to modify behaviour in the oEPM, chronic fluoxetine (but not chronic imipramine) attenuated total flat back approach and increased head dipping outside the central square. Together, the results indicate that the oEPM induces behavioural defensive responses that are sensitive to alprazolam and chronic fluoxetine. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Nottebohm F.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior | Liu W.-C.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior
Brain and Language | Year: 2010

We do not know how vocal learning came to be, but it is such a salient trait in human evolution that many have tried to imagine it. In primates this is difficult because we are the only species known to possess this skill. Songbirds provide a richer and independent set of data. I use comparative data and ask broad questions: How does vocal learning emerge during ontogeny? In what contexts? What are its benefits? How did it evolve from unlearned vocal signals? How was brain anatomy altered to enable vocal learning? What is the relation of vocal learning to adult neurogenesis? No one has described yet a circuit or set of circuits that can master vocal learning, but this knowledge may soon be within reach. Moreover, as we uncover how birds encode their learned song, we may also come closer to understanding how we encode our thoughts. © 2010.


Campos K.F.C.,Paulista University | Campos K.F.C.,São Paulo State University | Amaral V.C.S.,Paulista University | Amaral V.C.S.,São Paulo State University | And 8 more authors.
Behavioural Brain Research | Year: 2013

The rat exposure test (RET) is a prey (mouse)-predator (rat) situation that activates brain defensive areas and elicits hormonal and defensive behavior in the mouse. Here, we investigated possible correlations between the spatiotemporal [time spent in protected (home chamber and tunnel) and unprotected (surface) compartments and frequency of entries into the three compartments] and ethological [e.g., duration of protected and unprotected stretched-attend postures (SAP), duration of contact with the rat's compartment] measures (Experiment 1). Secondly, we investigated the effects of systemic treatment with pro- or anti-aversive drugs on the behavior that emerged from the factor analysis (Experiment 2). The effects of chronic (21 days) imipramine and fluoxetine on defensive behavior were also investigated (Experiment 3). Exp. 1 revealed that the time in the protected compartment, protected SAP and rat contacts loaded on factor 1 (defensive behavior), while the total entries and unprotected SAP loaded on factor 2 (locomotor activity). Exp. 2 showed that alprazolam (but not diazepam) selectively changed the defensive factor. Caffeine produced a mild proaversive-like effect, whereas yohimbine only decreased locomotor activity (total entries). Fluoxetine (but not imipramine) produced a weak proaversive-like effect. 5-HT1A/5-HT2 receptor ligands did not change any behavioral measure. In Exp. 3, chronic fluoxetine (but not imipramine) attenuated the defensive behavior factor without changing locomotion. Given that the defensive factor was sensitive to drugs known to attenuate (alprazolam and chronic fluoxetine) and induce (caffeine) panic attack, we suggest the RET as a useful test to assess the effects of panicolytic and panicogenic drugs. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


May M.D.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior | Surowiec K.,Texas Tech University | McGlone J.J.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior
Professional Animal Scientist | Year: 2015

The molecule 2-methyl-2-butenal (2M2B) is a maternal pheromone in rabbits and an interomone in dogs eliciting behavioral and heart-rate changes. The molecule 2M2B is manufactured in dog collars (Nurturecalm 24/7 Canine Calming Pheromone Collar, Meridian Animal Health, Omaha, NE) and in aerosol sprays (Sentry Calming Spray for Dogs, Sergeant's Pet Care Products Inc., Omaha, NE). To determine volatile release of this molecule in the collar and liquid, solid-phase microextraction followed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry was performed on the headspace over the test materials. In Exp. 1, a snippet of dog collar and 3 mL of aerosol liquid were compared with a standard of 2M2B in isopropyl alcohol. In Exp. 2, a dog collar was removed from its wrapping and placed at room temperature for 49 d. On d 0, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 42, and 49 relative concentrations of molecules volatilized were calculated from area under the corresponding gas-chromatography peak. Release of 2M2B followed an exponential decay rate over time. In Exp. 3, collars were placed on 3 dogs for 35 d. Dogs were variable in their level of activity. Dog-worn collars had smaller and more variable concentrations of the 2M2B in the head space at 35 d than the same collar kept in the laboratory at room temperature. This paper authenticates a technique for the assay of low concentrations of pheromones or interomones released from plastic collars or a liquid formulation. Furthermore, pheromone or interomone release over time was documented both in laboratory and field settings. © 2015 American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists.


Rico J.L.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior | Penagos-Gil M.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior | Castaneda A.F.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior | Corredor K.,Laboratory of Animal Behavior
Behavioural Processes | Year: 2016

Repeated testing on the elevated plus-maze (EPM) leads rats and mice to avoid the open-arms of the apparatus. The effect of multiple exposures to the EPM on the behavioral profile of gerbils is unknown. In this study, young and middle-aged gerbils were exposed to the EPM and four retests were carried out 24, 48, 72 and 96 h after the first trial in order to determine whether animals exhibited open-arms avoidance. In addition, groups of young and middle-aged gerbils were exposed to the EPM for 20-min followed by a 5-min retest trial 24 h apart to analyze the effect of a prolonged exposure to the EPM on open-arms exploration during first trial and retest. Gerbils exhibited high exploration of open-arms during the first trial and progressive locomotor decrease across repeated testing. Unlike previous reports for rats and mice, young gerbils showed a stable open-arms exploration both across multiple exposures and during a prolonged exposure to EPM. Middle-aged gerbils also exhibited a stable open-arms exploration during retest prior to the 20-min test. Results suggest a reliable repeated test paradigm for the EPM using our proposed methodology for gerbils. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.


PubMed | Laboratory of Animal Behavior
Type: | Journal: Behavioural processes | Year: 2015

Repeated testing on the elevated plus-maze (EPM) leads rats and mice to avoid the open-arms of the apparatus. The effect of multiple exposures to the EPM on the behavioral profile of gerbils is unknown. In this study, young and middle-aged gerbils were exposed to the EPM and four retests were carried out 24, 48, 72 and 96h after the first trial in order to determine whether animals exhibited open-arms avoidance. In addition, groups of young and middle-aged gerbils were exposed to the EPM for 20-min followed by a 5-min retest trial 24h apart to analyze the effect of a prolonged exposure to the EPM on open-arms exploration during first trial and retest. Gerbils exhibited high exploration of open-arms during the first trial and progressive locomotor decrease across repeated testing. Unlike previous reports for rats and mice, young gerbils showed a stable open-arms exploration both across multiple exposures and during a prolonged exposure to EPM. Middle-aged gerbils also exhibited a stable open-arms exploration during retest prior to the 20-min test. Results suggest a reliable repeated test paradigm for the EPM using our proposed methodology for gerbils.


PubMed | Laboratory of Animal Behavior
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Brain and language | Year: 2010

We do not know how vocal learning came to be, but it is such a salient trait in human evolution that many have tried to imagine it. In primates this is difficult because we are the only species known to possess this skill. Songbirds provide a richer and independent set of data. I use comparative data and ask broad questions: How does vocal learning emerge during ontogeny? In what contexts? What are its benefits? How did it evolve from unlearned vocal signals? How was brain anatomy altered to enable vocal learning? What is the relation of vocal learning to adult neurogenesis? No one has described yet a circuit or set of circuits that can master vocal learning, but this knowledge may soon be within reach. Moreover, as we uncover how birds encode their learned song, we may also come closer to understanding how we encode our thoughts.

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