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How can mice using iPads help cure Alzheimer's disease?

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This talk is free for members of BioSoc or £2 for non-members. You can also sign up for life membership (£15) or annual membership (£10) at this talk.

Strategies for cognitive translation from animals to humans: The touchscreen testing platform for mice and rats.

The use of animal models is an indispensable tool for the study of normal cognition, and for understanding and discovering treatments for disorders of learning, memory, and other aspects of cognition, such as those observed in Alzheimer’s disease. A major goal in the use of the animal models of cognition is translation, the ability successfully to transfer our behavioural results in animals to clinical studies in humans (and, indeed, back again). To achieve this aim, cognitive tests in animals should be as similar as possible to those used in humans. However, many of the currently most widely used animal behavioural tests are in fact very dissimilar to those used with human subjects, and criticism has been levied at animal research for using methodology that does not translate. In my talk I will discuss this problem, and introduce the touchscreen approach to assessing cognition in animal models, in which mice and rats interact with an iPad-like touchscreen. This method provides the ability to test rodents on tasks in many cases identical, in all important respects, to those we and others have used in humans. By taking such an approach we have a better chance than ever of achieving successful translation from mouse and rat to human in the study of normal cognition, and in discovering treatments for disorders of cognition such as Alzheimer’s disease.

This talk is part of the Cambridge University Biological Society series.

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