Spatial memory deficits in segmental trisomic Ts65Dn mice

Behav Brain Res. 1996 Dec;82(1):85-92. doi: 10.1016/s0166-4328(97)81111-4.


Spatial memory was assessed in the segmental trisomic 16 mouse (Ts65Dn), a potential model for Down syndrome (DS), using the 12-arm radial maze (RAM). Ts65Dn mice have a portion of mouse chromosome 16 syntenic to the distal end of human chromosome 21 triplicated. On each of 8 daily trials of the RAM, Ts65Dn mice made fewer correct choices than control mice and performed at or near chance levels, indicating a deficit in spatial working memory. On trials 9 and 10, Ts65Dn mice performed as well as control mice on the initial 12 choices, but required a greater number of choices to complete the RAM. The improved performance of Ts65Dn mice on trials 9 and 10 was lost when the animals were retested after a 50-day retention period, suggesting that long-term memory is also defective. These results are not likely explained by differences in either response bias or perceptual discrimination. Ts65Dn and control mice displayed comparable levels of performance in spontaneous alternation in a T-maze, demonstrating that simple spatial memory was not impaired. In the elevated plus maze, Ts65Dn mice did not display higher anxiety levels which could affect their performance in the RAM. In fact, Ts65Dn mice visited open arms on the elevated plus maze more frequently and spent more time on open arms than did control mice. Taken together, these results provide evidence for short- and long-term spatial memory deficits in Ts65Dn mice.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight / physiology
  • Exploratory Behavior / physiology
  • Male
  • Maze Learning / physiology
  • Memory Disorders / genetics*
  • Memory Disorders / psychology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Space Perception / physiology*
  • Trisomy / physiopathology*