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Neuroprotection against methylmercury exposure.
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Effects of low-level, adult-onset methylmercury exposure on measures of motor function and learning.

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Neuroprotection by calcium channel blockers against methylmercury exposure and against aging.

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Collaborator: Dr. William Atchison of Michigan State University.

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Genetic influences over behavior
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Mouse strain differences in performance of selected operant procedures.

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Methods Development.
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 Development of procedures designed to mimic selected functions examined in human neuropsychological testing.
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Intra-dimensional/extra-dimensional shift.

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Incremental repeated acquisition of behavioral chains.

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Reinforcement efficacy and motivation.

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Motor competence.

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High-rate behavior as an indicator of motor function.
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Differential reinforcement of high-rate behavior (DRH) schedules to generate high-rate behavior and functional units of bursts of short interresponse times.

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Percentile schedules in which each interresponse time is compared with a sample of recent interresponse times and targeted for reinforcement only if it is faster than some proportion of those.

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The role of sensory feedback for criterion responses.

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Behavior under concurrent schedules in transition.
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Development of a rapid assessment of behavior change under concurrent schedules during single sessions (single-session transitions).

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Quantitative descriptions of behavior change.

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Interactions with behaviorally active drugs and toxic substances.

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Application of quantitative descriptors of behavior to the assessment of risk.
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Application of novel approaches to risk assessment, developed by Glowa and MacPhail,  that incorporate individual susceptibility and natural within- and between-subject variability into the assessment of risk.

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Examination of reinforcement processes in mice.
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Examination of the validity and independence of terms of a recently developed quantitative model that separates the ongoing stream of voluntary behavior neatly into separate motivational and motor components.

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Laboratory Automation.
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Information management and laboratory automation are important components of the laboratory efforts.

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We conduct behavior sessions with approximately 200 rats/day in several different experiments.
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Depending on the experiment we collect and update between 50 and several thousand data points/rat/day.

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We keep track of each rat individually throughout the course of its 2-1/2 year lifespan.

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We monitor the behavior of each rat individually by automatically updating the rat's data file and generating graphical displays daily of its recent behavior. This is conducted daily with a single command.

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The laboratory includes a local area network of six or so computers running a mix of Windows NT, Windows 2000, and Windows XP, with web access to NT-based network drives and automatic nightly backup of all data. Behavioral data are collected using Med PC  and automatic data-management is accomplished using RS1 data management software and their RPL language.

 

 

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Last modified: July 08, 2010