A Rank-Order Procedure Applied to an Ethoexperimental Behavior Model—The Multivariate Concentric Square FieldTM (MCSF) Test


Designing relevant animal models in order to investigate the neurobiological basis for human mental disorders is an important challenge. The need for new tests to be developed and traditional tests to be improved has recently been em-phasized. The authors propose a multivariate test approach, the multivariate concentric square fieldTM (MCSF) test. To measure and evaluate variation in the behavioral traits, we here put forward a statistical procedure of which the working title is “trend analysis”. Low doses of the benzodiazepine agonist diazepam (DZP; 1.0, 1.5, or 2.0 mg/kg) were used for exploring the use of the trend analysis in combination with multivariate data analysis for assessment of MCSF per-formance in rats. The commonly used elevated plus maze (EPM) test was used for comparison. The trend analysis comparing vehicle and the DZP1.5 groups revealed significantly higher general activity and risk-taking behavior in the DZP1.5 rats relative to vehicle rats. This finding was supported by multivariate data analysis procedures. It is concluded that the trend analysis together with multivariate data analysis procedures offers possibilities to extract information and illustrates effects obtained in the MCSF test. Diazepam in doses that have no apparent increase in open arm activity in the EPM was effective to alter the behavior in the MCSF test. The MCSF test and the use of multivariate data analysis and the proposed trend analysis may be useful alternatives to behavioral test batteries and traditionally used tests for the understanding of mechanisms underlying various mental states. Finally, the impact of an ethological reasoning and multivariate measures enabling behavioral profiling of animals may be a useful complementary methodology when phenotyping animals in behavioral neuroscience.

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B. Meyerson, B. Jurek and E. Roman, "A Rank-Order Procedure Applied to an Ethoexperimental Behavior Model—The Multivariate Concentric Square FieldTM (MCSF) Test," Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science, Vol. 3 No. 4, 2013, pp. 350-361. doi: 10.4236/jbbs.2013.34035.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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