Evaluating rodent motor functions: Which tests to choose?

Lisa-Maria Schoenfeld, Dearbhaile Dooley, Ali Jahanshahi, Yasin Temel, Sven Hendrix*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

12 Citations (Web of Science)
24 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Damage to the motor cortex induced by stroke or traumatic brain injury (TBI) can result in chronic motor deficits. For the development and improvement of therapies, animal models which possess symptoms comparable to the clinical population are used. However, the use of experimental animals raises valid ethical and methodological concerns. To decrease discomfort by experimental procedures and to increase the quality of results, non-invasive and sensitive rodent motor tests are needed.

A broad variety of rodent motor tests are available to determine deficits after stroke or TBI. The current review describes and evaluates motor tests that fall into three categories: Tests to evaluate fine motor skills and grip strength, tests for gait and inter-limb coordination and neurological deficit scores. In this review, we share our thoughts on standardized data presentation to increase data comparability between studies. We also critically evaluate current methods and provide recommendations for choosing the best behavioral test for a new research line.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)298-312
Number of pages15
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Volume83
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

Keywords

  • Motor tests
  • Rodents
  • Stroke
  • TBI
  • TRAUMATIC BRAIN-INJURY
  • CEREBRAL-ARTERY OCCLUSION
  • SPINAL-CORD-INJURY
  • CONTROLLED CORTICAL IMPACT
  • ASSESSING GAIT IMPAIRMENT
  • ADULT RATS
  • STAIRCASE TEST
  • BEHAVIORAL RECOVERY
  • INTRACEREBRAL HEMORRHAGE
  • NEUROLOGICAL DEFICIT

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