TMT-induced autonomic and behavioral changes and the neural basis of its processing

Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2005;29(8):1145-56. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2005.04.018. Epub 2005 Aug 15.


One of the main interests in the field of neuroscience is the investigation of the neural basis of fear. During recent years, an increasing number of studies have used trimethylthiazoline (TMT), a component of red fox feces, as a stimulus to induce fear in predator naive rats, mice, and voles. The aim of the present review is to summarize these studies. We present an overview to the autonomic and behavioral changes that are induced by TMT exposure. Then, we summarize the small number of studies that have examined the neural processing of the TMT stimulus. Finally, we compare these studies with those using a natural predator or predator odor to induce fear and discuss the possible use of TMT exposure in rodents as an animal model of unconditioned fear in humans.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autonomic Nervous System / drug effects*
  • Behavior, Animal / drug effects*
  • Feces*
  • Models, Biological
  • Neural Pathways / drug effects*
  • Odorants / analysis*
  • Predatory Behavior / drug effects
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos / metabolism
  • Thiazoles / pharmacology*


  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos
  • Thiazoles