Tests to assess motor phenotype in mice: a user's guide

Nat Rev Neurosci. 2009 Jul;10(7):519-29. doi: 10.1038/nrn2652. Epub 2009 Jun 10.


The characterization of mouse models of human disease is essential for understanding the underlying pathophysiology and developing new therapeutics. Many diseases are often associated with more than one model, and so there is a need to determine which model most closely represents the disease state or is most suited to the therapeutic approach under investigation. In the case of neurological disease, motor tests provide a good read-out of neurological function. This overview of available motor tasks aims to aid researchers in making the correct choice of test when attempting to tease out a transgenic phenotype or when assessing the recovery of motor function following therapeutic intervention.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animal Experimentation
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal / physiology*
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Humans
  • Locomotion / physiology
  • Mice
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Nervous System Diseases / physiopathology
  • Neuropsychological Tests* / standards
  • Phenotype*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity