Early isolation in the gerbil (Meriones unguiculatus): Behavioral and physiological effects

Abstract

Gerbils were reared from Day 15 to Day 170, either in social and perceptual isolation or with nonlactating foster parents and foster siblings. Territorial marking, aggression, and open-field activity were markedly depressed by the isolation conditions. Spontaneous seizures were observed in every isolated animal during testing, but only occasionally in control animals. Adrenal glands of isolates were heavier. Body, ventral gland, and testes weights were not affected by the experimental conditions.

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Correspondence to Elaine M. Hull.

Additional information

This experiment was submitted in partial fulfillment of requirements for the undergraduate Psychology Honors program by the first author and Independent Study requirements by the second author. It was supervised by the third author.

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Berg, R.A., Shanin, R.D. & Hull, E.M. Early isolation in the gerbil (Meriones unguiculatus): Behavioral and physiological effects. Psychobiology 3, 35–38 (1975). https://doi.org/10.3758/BF03326819

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Keywords

  • Physiological Psychology
  • Foster Parent
  • Testis Weight
  • Mongolian Gerbil
  • Freezing Behavior