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Animal Models of Depression: Classification and Relevant Validation Criteria

  • Santiago Márquez-Herrero
  • José Ignacio Hernández
  • Osvaldo Soler
  • Manuel Alejandro Guevara
  • Pascual Ángel Gargiulo
Chapter

Abstract

In the last years, a change in the ways of understanding and applying experimental models has been observed. Taking into account the conceptual difference between a model, a test, and a paradigm, a classification of the current animal models of depression is proposed. This classification follows an empirical criterion and is catalogued according to the practical nature of the technical procedures implied in the experimental process. It diverges in some sense from the one proposed by Willner. He described 18 models following the conceptual rigor of his classical notions about validation criteria. It is worth considering that the design of a model fundamentally aims at imitating the etiological process of transformation from a healthy organism into a pathological organism through a vulnerability state in time. Most experimental models employ either genetic manipulations or some type of environmental stress or even a combination of both. Validating those experimental models is required in order to certify the applicability of their findings and abbreviate the distance between basic research and medical practice. Each one serves a particular purpose which determines the validation criteria that it must satisfy. Finally, the classification here proposed is open to modifications regarding future discoveries and findings in the field of neurobiological research and human phenomenology that may change our comprehension of the experimental models currently in use.

Keywords

Depressive disorder Animal model Classification Translational research Rat 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Santiago Márquez-Herrero
    • 1
  • José Ignacio Hernández
    • 1
  • Osvaldo Soler
    • 1
  • Manuel Alejandro Guevara
    • 1
  • Pascual Ángel Gargiulo
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Laboratory of Neurosciences and Experimental Psychology National Council of Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET), Area of Pharmacology, Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medical SciencesNational University of CuyoMendozaArgentina
  2. 2.Cathedra of Psychopathology, Faculty of Humanities and Educational SciencesCatholic University of ArgentinaMendozaArgentina
  3. 3.Laboratory of Neurosciences and Experimental Psychology, Area of Pharmacology, Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, National University of CuyoCouncil of Scientific and Technological Research (CONICET)MendozaArgentina

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