The Use of Home Cage Monitoring to Determine Whether Individual Male Mouse Activity Patterns Correlate With Nest Complexity

Investigator and Named Information Officer

Joanna Moore has been working with laboratory animals for over 20 years, with a special interest in their welfare and care. Dr. Moore has worked in academia and industry and was awarded a PhD in Animal Sciences in 2018. Through the use of Home Cage technology, she has continued to build on her research for the welfare of animals in order to help researchers to further understand the motivation and needs animals in their care.

It is well established that nesting materials are an important inclusion for mouse cages. We wanted to determine whether there was a significant difference in mice activity when offered three different material choices and whether there was any correlation between activity in the cage and nest complexity.

We individually housed nine adult male mice in Digital Ventilated Cages (DVC®), and offered each mouse one of three nesting options for a seven-day period, either Lignocel Large, 9gms of shredded paper, or a combination of Lignocel and shredded paper as well as a red igloo and fun tunnel. After seven days the nest was given a score in terms of complexity using the method published by Jirkof et al. (2013) and the mice were moved to a clean cage with a different nesting option for a further seven days until each mouse has been exposed to each option. We used the established home-cage monitoring system to determine whether there were clear differences in the activity pattern of mice depending on the nesting, and whether these were related to the complexity of the nest.

This poster discusses the results of our analysis and whether the nesting offered to mice can reduce the disruption in their activity pattern. All animal studies were ethically reviewed and carried out in accordance with Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 and the GSK Policy on the Care, Welfare and Treatment of Animals.


To download a PDF copy of the presentation, click on the “LinkedIn SlideShare” icon located in the bottom-right corner of the slide-viewer. From the SlideShare landing page click the “Download” button to retrieve the file.