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Category learning in rodents using touchscreen‐based tasks

Broschard, MB; Kim, J; Love, BC; Freeman, JH; (2020) Category learning in rodents using touchscreen‐based tasks. Genes, Brain and Behavior 10.1111/gbb.12665. (In press).

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Abstract

Categorization is a fundamental cognitive function that organizes our experiences into meaningful “chunks.” This category knowledge can then be generalized to novel stimuli and situations. Multiple clinical populations, including people with Parkinson’s disease, amnesia, autism, ADHD, and schizophrenia, have impairments in the acquisition and use of categories. Although rodent research is well suited for examining the neural mechanisms underlying cognitive functions, many rodent cognitive tasks have limited translational value. To bridge this gap, we use touchscreens to permit greater flexibility in stimulus presentation and task design, track key dependent measures, and minimize experimenter involvement. Touchscreens offer a valuable tool for creating rodent cognitive tasks that are directly comparable to tasks used with humans. Touchscreen tasks are also readily used with cutting‐edge neuroscientific methods that are difficult to do in humans such as optogenetics, chemogenetics, neurophysiology, and calcium imaging (using miniscopes). In this review, we demonstrate advantages of touchscreen‐based tasks for studying category learning in rats. We also address multiple factors for consideration when designing category learning tasks, including the limitations of the rodent visual system, experimental design, and analysis strategies.

Type: Article
Title: Category learning in rodents using touchscreen‐based tasks
Location: England
DOI: 10.1111/gbb.12665
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/gbb.12665
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Rat, category generalization, executive function, selective attention, touchscreen, translational research, visual category learning
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Experimental Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10097775
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