Psychophysical Testing of Neurologic Mutant Mice

  • Barbara A. Ray


In taking psychophysical measurements of animals, the tester cannot simply tell his subjects what behavior he requires. Nothing is accomplished by saying to a mouse: “Tell me whenever you hear the tone.” The tester must use nonverbal methods to teach the animal to respond to the test stimuli, and only the test stimuli. The experimenter’s choice of indicator response and teaching method will, to some degree, influence the psychophysical measurements obtained. For example, one response may have a higher “false alarm” rate than another. A high false alarm rate will lower threshold measures. It may be more difficult to train one response than another. The complexity of the training procedure will restrict the number of animals that can be tested in a given time. These variables can be manipulated over a wide range by the experimenter, who will choose his method to suit his particular purpose.


White Noise Test Period Warning Signal Conditioned Suppression Anechoic Chamber 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barbara A. Ray
    • 1
  1. 1.Neurology ResearchMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA

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