Parallel Rod Floor Apparatus
A test of mouse motor incoordination
- Easier to use than Rota-Rod
- Similar measurements to Rota-Rod testing
- Uses ANY-maze software
The Parallel Rod Floor Apparatus, designed for assessing the effects of drugs, brain damage and disease, on motor coordination and fatigue, is ideal for use with knockout and transgenic mice. The Parallel Rod Floor Tests high throughput design makes it an extremely versatile and valuable screening and phenotyping tool.
Adapted from the apparatus first described and developed by Drs. Kamens and Crabbe, the Parallel Rod Floor Test is a new model of ataxia in mice. The Parallel Rod Floor Test allows for the simultaneous measurement of ataxia and locomotor activity, adding variety to the battery of other tests currently available.
The Parallel Rod Floor Test capitalizes on the strong aspects of both Melnick's paw slip task (Melnick et al. 2002) and the grid test (Belknap 1975; Crabbe et al. 2003) to create a very robust measure of motor incoordination.
Yields Two Additional, Dependent Variables
The Parallel Rod Floor Test yields two dependent variables not necessarily provided by other tests.
- Number of errors (foot slips)
- Horizontal distance traveled (cm)
Using a ratio (errors per cm traveled 100) to index ataxia in this apparatus corrected for individual differences in activity provides a robust and unique measure of genetic contributions to locomotor incoordination. This is in contrast to several other measures of ataxia, such as the Rota-Rod, where the parameters of the task (e.g., rate of acceleration of rotation) have been shown to have large effects on the pattern of strain sensitivity.
The Parallel Rod Floor Apparatus is an ANY-maze software-driven product (www.ANY-maze.com). The software can track as many as 16 Parallel Rod Floor Tests simultaneously. The software also includes more than 100 standard measures, and performs full statistical analysis of results immediately upon completion of the experiment.