Discrimination of computer-graphic stimuli by mice: a method for the behavioral characterization of transgenic and gene-knockout models

Behav Neurosci. 2001 Aug;115(4):957-60. doi: 10.1037//0735-7044.115.4.957.


An automated method is described for the behavioral testing of mice in an apparatus that allows computer-graphic stimulus material to be presented. Mice responded to these stimuli by making a nose-poke toward a computer monitor that was equipped with a touchscreen attachment for detecting responses. It was found that C57BL/6 mice were able to solve single-pair visual discriminations as well as 3-pair concurrent visual discriminations. The finding that mice are capable of complex visual discriminations introduces the possibility of testing mice on nonspatial tasks that are similar to those used with rats, monkeys, and humans. Furthermore, the method seems particularly well suited to the comprehensive behavioral assessment of transgenic and gene-knockout models.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Computers*
  • Conditioning, Operant
  • Discrimination, Psychological*
  • Equipment Design
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Pattern Recognition, Visual*
  • Visual Perception*