Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Robustness of novelty preference for a motion-based one-trial object recognition task in male and female adolescent rats
by Blackmon, William L., M.A., University of South Carolina, 2009, 79; 1475761
Abstract (Summary)

Rodents' response to novel objects is based upon complex interactions between intrinsic and extrinsic motivations, many of which decrease the validity of measures operationally defining exploratory activity. Two such threats to validity include the frequency of non-exploratory behaviors exhibited during the retention phase of a standard one-trial object recognition (OR) task, as well as the confounding of novelty preference with typical thigmotaxic activity observed in open field environments. Object motion may be employed to minimize the influence of these factors, thereby increasing the construct validity for novelty preference in the one-trial OR paradigm. Prior to assessing the validity of a motion-based one-trial OR task, it is necessary to determine whether object motion is sensitive to novelty preference. Adolescent Sprague Dawley rats were subjected to either a standard or motion-based one-trial OR task from which measures of raw time exploration and discrimination were derived. Object discrimination was also assessed in male and female rats in order to characterize sex-specificity observed in rodent object recognition. Novel objects were explored significantly more than familiar objects in each task with motion-based OR demonstrating significant increases in exploration of both objects. Experiments 1 and 2 also showed that males explored the novel object significantly more than females. These results suggest that a motion-based one-trial OR task was sensitive to novelty preference in adolescent Sprague Dawley rats and may provide a method for enhancing construct validity in one-trial tests of object recognition.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Booze, Rosemarie M.
Commitee: Booze, Rosemarie M., Coleman, James R., Mactutus, Charles F.
School: University of South Carolina
Department: Experimental Psychology
School Location: United States -- South Carolina
Source: MAI 48/05M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Experimental psychology
Keywords: Adolescence, Novel object recognition task, Novelty, Object recognition, One-trial object recognition, Sexual dimorphism
Publication Number: 1475761
ISBN: 9781109753875
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