Small Animal Behavior Core Laboratory Services Five Choice Serial Reaction Time Task

Services: Five Choice Serial Reaction Time Task

Description: This task was developed as a rodent analog of the continuous performance task (CPT) of sustained attention in humans. The task is conducted in an operant chamber without levers. Instead of levers there are 5 apertures which can be briefly illuminated via light-emitting diodes located at the rear of each aperture. A rat is rewarded with a food pellet if it places its nose in the correct aperture (target nose poke) within 5 seconds of a light stimulus (duration is usually 0.5 sec). The visual target is presented randomly in one of the 5 holes and a large number of trials (usually around 100) are presented in a session. Several aspects of the animals performance are assessed (accuracy = % correct), anticipatory responses (premature nose pokes which are thought to be analogous to impulsivity in humans) and perseverative responses (additional nose pokes following a correct response before a new trial is initiated, which are thought to be analogous to compulsive behaviors in humans).