A simplified microwave-based motion detector for home cage activity monitoring in mice

Andreas Genewsky, Daniel E. Heinz, Paul M. Kaplick, Kasyoka Kilonzo, Carsten T. Wotjak
2017 Journal of Biological Engineering  
Locomotor activity of rodents is an important readout to assess well-being and physical health, and is pivotal for behavioral phenotyping. Measuring homecage-activity with standard and cost-effective optical methods in mice has become difficult, as modern housing conditions (e.g. individually ventilated cages, cage enrichment) do not allow constant, unobstructed, visual access. Resolving this issue either makes greater investments necessary, especially if several experiments will be run in
more » ... lel, or is at the animals' expense. The purpose of this study is to provide an easy, yet satisfying solution for the behavioral biologist at novice makers level. Results: We show the design, construction and validation of a simplified, low-cost, radar-based motion detector for home cage activity monitoring in mice. In addition we demonstrate that mice which have been selectively bred for low levels of anxiety-related behavior (LAB) have deficits in circadian photoentrainment compared to CD1 control animals. Conclusion: In this study we have demonstrated that our proposed low-cost microwave-based motion detector is well-suited for the study of circadian rhythms in mice.
doi:10.1186/s13036-017-0079-y pmid:29177007 pmcid:PMC5688739 fatcat:2tpqoqgnibg3demgh54jbnsjr4