National Institute on Drug Abuse
National Institutes of Health
What Do We Really Know About Mouse Behavior?
Classical and New Approaches for Phenotyping Transgenic and Knockout Mice
New Orleans, LA
October 29, 1997
Lucinda Miner, Ph.D.
Summary of Meeting:
Intent: This symposium presented an overview of behavioral paradigms
appropriate for analyzing mouse phenotypes. Given the rapid advances in
the development of transgenic and knockout mice, chemical mutagenesis and
quantitative trait loci analyses, this meeting was very timely in educating
the participants about the field of behavioral neuroscience. Professor
van Oortmerssen, University of Groningen, presented the ethogram of normal
mouse behaviors in naturalistic environments, including social, aggressive,
nesting and circadian behaviors. Dr. Wehner, University of Colorado, discussed
mouse strain differences on learning and memory tasks. Dr. Cunningham,
Oregon Health Sciences University, discussed the differences between mouse
and rat behaviors and approaches for adapting rat paradigms for mice, with
a particular focus on substance abuse. Finally, Dr. Crawley, National Institute
on Mental Health, presented specific methods for behavioral phenotyping
of transgenic and knockout mice and detailed paradigms relevant to neuropsychiatric
Outcome: The meeting was held at the New Orleans Mariott Hotel, October
29, 1997. Greater than 400 people attended. Attendees were provided with
abstracts of each presentation as well as a list of references compiled
by each speaker detailing important articles relevant to each presentation.
Information from the meeting and references are currently being compiled
and will be made available through the Genetics Workgroup's web page. Given
the great interest in the event, another satellite symposium is being planned
for the 1998 Society for Neuroscience meeting, tentatively titled, Advances
in Mouse Genetics.