Fear-Shuttle

Our Fear-Shuttle apparatus plays both roles of a Shuttle-Box and a double Fear conditioning apparatus. Moreover, everything has been facilitated to couple behavior analyses with optogenetics and electrophysiology.

FEAR – SHUTTLE

We developed an apparatus that may be used either as a Shuttle Box or as a double Fear conditioning chamber.

 

Appareil en Mode Fear Conditioning - 2 compartiments indépendants pour la mesure du Freezing
Apparatus in the Fear Conditioning configuration – 2 independent compartments for the measure of Freezing behavior
Appareil en Mode Shuttle box - 2 compartiments séparés par une porte automatisée
Apparatus in the Shuttle box configuration – 2 compartments separated by an an automatic gate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apparatus

The aparatus, initially designed for mice, is composed of:

  • a farradized, soundproof and ventilated wooden cubicle, mounted on a mobile aluminum trolley
  • a cabled grid, two drawers
  • 2 square compartments (20x20cm)
  • an automated door, shutting from below the floor
  • independent houselights above each compartment
  • a tight infrared beams frame to measure every Freezing behavior, the locomotor activity and rearings
  • a scrambled electric shock generator and a shocker (0.1-2mA)
  • a sound generator: pure tones (1-20kHz), white noise, WAV files played from PC, 55-90dB

 

We propose several options to facilitate the coupling of the behavior analysis and external techniques such as electrophysiology and optogenetics:

  • a cable guide to allow cables and fibers to follow smoothly the animal from one compartment to the other
  • a synchronization kit to sign every behavioral event on your electrophysiological traces
  • a high-frequency TTL generator (up to 500Hz) that may activate a laser according the behavioral outputs of the animal
  • the ceiling of the apparatus is drilled in its center in order to place our 64-channel electric commutator over it

 

Triptique

Softwares

Two different acquisition softwares can manage Avoidance or Fear conditioning experiments:

  • POLY FEAR is set to conduct experiments on the 2 compartments simultaneously.
  • POLY AVOIDANCE manages the acitve and passive avoidance experimentsScreenshot_POLY FEAR AVOIDANCE

 

POLY Files softwares analyzes the data acquired from POLY FEAR and POLY AVOIDANCE. A great number of variables may be calculated, e.g.:

  • number of Freezing, series of the durations of Freezing, kietics of Freezing
  • locomotor activity and rearings (number of beam breaks, number of rearings, kinetics of locomotor activity and rearings, distance travelled, path travelled)
  • duration of Freezing center on an event (sound or shock emission)

Additionally to these variables, some are specific to the avoidance:

  • number of avoidances, escapes, errors
  • sequence of behavioral outputs
  • series the time to avoid and time to escape
  • number of entries and time spent in each compartment

POLY Files software is open, so that any user may create his own variables. However, all the variables detailed above are provided at the installation.
The results are displayed in a .xls datasheet file.

 

Excel-EN