Mouse lemurs are suggested to represent promising novel non-human primate models for aging research. However, standardized and cross-taxa cognitive testing methods are still lacking. Touchscreen-based testing procedures have proven high stimulus control and reliability in humans and rodents. The aim of this study was to adapt these procedures to mouse lemurs, thereby exploring the effect of age. We measured appetitive learning and cognitive flexibility of two age groups by applying pairwise visual discrimination (PD) and reversal learning (PDR) tasks. On average, mouse lemurs needed 24 days of training before starting with the PD task. Individual performances in PD and PDR tasks correlate significantly, suggesting that individual learning performance is unrelated to the respective task. Compared to the young, aged mouse lemurs showed impairments in both PD and PDR tasks. They needed significantly more trials to reach the task criteria. A much higher inter-individual variation in old than in young adults was revealed. Furthermore, in the PDR task, we found a significantly higher perseverance in aged compared to young adults, indicating an age-related deficit in cognitive flexibility. This study presents the first touchscreen-based data on the cognitive skills and age-related dysfunction in mouse lemurs and provides a unique basis to study mechanisms of inter-individual variation. It furthermore opens exciting perspectives for comparative approaches in aging, personality, and evolutionary research.
Stress exposure evokes a variety of physiological and behavioral responses in an organism, enabling it to cope with stressful situations and changes in the environment. In a previous study, we found that subjecting individuals of Carollia perspicillata to a chronic immobilization stress paradigm resulted in a significant increase of fecal cortisol concentrations. In the present study, we investigated the influence of stress on the behavior of C. perspicillata, by adapting a commonly used behavioral paradigm for characterizing coping styles of animals (i.e., the elevated-plus maze) to bats. Adult bats were subjected 1 h/day to immobilization over a period of 10 days. On the subsequent day, the behavior of each animal was analyzed in a custom-made plus maze, consisting of four arms (two open and two enclosed ones) and designed 3D because of the bats ability to fly. In this newly invented design, we compared the behaviors of stressed animals and controls. Changes in locomotor and exploratory behavior suggest two divergent adaptive behaviors in C. perspicillata following the chronic stress paradigm, possibly indicating different stress coping styles.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.