Assessing Healthspan and Lifespan Measures in Aging Mice: Optimization of Testing Protocols, Replicability, and Rater Reliability

Curr Protoc Mouse Biol. 2018 Jun;8(2):e45. doi: 10.1002/cpmo.45.


The relationship between chronological age (lifespan) and biological age (healthspan) varies amongst individuals. Understanding the normal trajectory and characteristic traits of aging mice throughout their lifespan is important for selecting the most reliable and reproducible measures to test hypotheses. The protocols herein describe assays used for aging studies at The Jackson Laboratory's Mouse Neurobehavioral Phenotyping Facility and include assessments of frailty, cognition, and sensory (hearing, vision, olfaction), motor, and fine motor function that can be used for assessing phenotypes in aged mice across their lifespan as well as provide guidance for setting up and validating these behavioral measures. Researchers aiming to study aging phenotypes require access to aged mice as a reference when initiating these types of studies in order to observe normal aging characteristics that cannot be observed in young adult mouse populations. © 2018 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Keywords: activity; aging; cognition; episodic memory; frailty; hearing; mice; olfaction; vision.

MeSH terms

  • Aging*
  • Animals
  • Health Status*
  • Longevity*
  • Mice / physiology*
  • Reproducibility of Results