Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Deeper analysis for Barnes Maze

The Circular Mazes option in HVS Image 2016 gives the researcher much more detailed and flexible analysis than was previously available.

In addition to the traditional measures of Latency to Escape Hole, Path length and Hole Approaches, the circular mazes option gives a large range of measures and analyses relevant to learning and memory studies.

Researchers can choose which measures and analyses to include in their results files. Some of those available are:

  • Heading angle (angle of initial path relative to the ideal path toward the escape hole)
  • Number of approaches to target hole
  • Number of approaches to each hole
  • Percentage time in the vicinity of target hole
  • Percentage time in the vicinity of each hole
  • Percentage time in target quad
  • Percentage path in each quad
  • Percentage time exploring the outer part of the platform (i.e. the circle of holes vs the interior of the platform)
  • Percentage path exploring the outer part of the platform (i.e. the circle of holes vs the interior of the platform)
  • Latency to the vicinity of each hole
  • Path ratio (actual path / direct path)

Other more complex measures and analyses are also available for the researcher to use if of interest.

In addition trials can be broken down into time bins or slices so as to reveal significant behaviors that are specific to certain parts of the trial. For example this may reveal an animal investigating the expected escape hole at the beginning of a probe test and then moving on to explore elsewhere, which would not be apparent from the more commonly used measures such as percentage time in target quad or number of approaches to target hole.

Publication quality path plots can be saved both for entire trials and for slices of trials.

Series of trials can be run and analyzed automatically, with results in .csv format for easy import to Excel or other packages if required.