Researchers studying new drug targets in CNS disorders need comprehensive ways to assess a target's relevance. Use of knockout or transgenic mice with careful phenotyping has proven to be a powerful method, with the potential not only to validate hypotheses about gene function but also to uncover unexpected functions. The evaluation of behavior in genetically modified mice is especially complex, because there are multiple ways for a mutation to produce subtle changes that affect performance in any given test. Therefore, it is advantageous to use convergent data from multiple behavioral paradigms in order to better evaluate the significance of any behavioral finding (and avoid missing useful observations). For example, performance in the Morris Water Maze is affected by multiple factors, including anxiety, attention, locomotor function, motivation, memory, and vision. At PsychoGenics we offer standard and customized behavioral testing batteries developed for an in-depth and high throughput behavioral characterization of transgenic animals. We have designed a standard battery of tests for a high-throughput phenotypic screen that incorporates assays selected for their ability, as a set, to probe a wide swath of animal behaviors associated with CNS disorders and their treatment by pharmaceuticals. Additionally, the individual assays and the collection of tests as a whole have been selected for their short duration to allow assessment of large numbers of mice in a relatively short time. We also offer batteries customized for a particular indication, if the mutant line was established to model a specific disease. Please contact us to find out more about lines not listed on our website. PsychoGenics is interested to collaborate with partners to develop new lines for mutual interests and share data.
PsychoScreen™ is an example test battery developed by PsychoGenics. PsychoScreen™ can uncover potential signs of anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, eating disorders, cognitive disorders, mania, epilepsy, pain, addiction, ADHD and impulsivity, neuromotor disorders, sleep disorders, and sexual disorders. Many different tests are run and the combination of results can be related to each of the major indications under study, as well as pinpoint potential confounds associated with the phenotype. Clients can obtain full results and detailed recommendations in as little as 3-4 weeks. Typically a full PsychoScreen™ requires 30 mutant and 30 wild type mice. Abridged versions of PsychoScreen™ can also be implemented with fewer mice, enlisting fewer tests for each of the indication areas, or focusing on specific indication(s).
Similar to methylphenidate (Ritalin), d-amphetamine was highly efficacious.