The URMC IDDRC Animal Behavior and Neurophysiology (ABN) Core will provide IDDRC members with access to behavioral and neurophysiological assays in rodent models that harness the expertise of the Core leadership and allow for investigation of the neural underpinnings of IDDs. The Core?s Components in animal behavior and neurophysiology are already central to work being conducted by IDDRC investigators, providing access to equipment, techniques, and analyses that are central to current neuroscience research. By providing access to well established assays that are essential to IDD research, the animal behavior component of the Core allows investigators to relate changes at the gene, cell, and circuit level in the animal models to behaviors that may provide mechanistic insight into IDDs. Similarly, by providing access to single neuron, multiunit, and population activity measures, the neurophysiology component of the core allows investigators to further establish bridges that link changes in patterns of neuronal activity to behavioral changes that may underlie a number of IDDs. Both components of the Core have continued to advance and validate new technologies; both are also critical to the Research Project. The ABN Core will be supported by dedicated administrative and technical faculty and staff to provide critical expertise in the design, implementation, and analysis of both behavioral and neurophysiological assays critical to IDD research. To achieve this, three Aims are proposed.
Aim 1 is to provide vital access to resources (both equipment and expertise) for carrying out behavioral and neurophysiological assays critical to IDDRC investigator research.
Aim 2 will provide technical and methodological guidance and support to generate data in both behavioral and neurophysiological assays critical to IDDRC investigator research.
Aim 3 will provide analysis and statistical guidance and support to interpret data in both behavioral and neurophysiological assays critical to IDDRC investigator research. Collectively, the ABN Core of the URMC IDDRC will allow investigators to perform behavioral and neurophysiological assays in animal models to gain insight into the neural underpinnings of IDDs. Through its interactions with other IDDRC Cores, it will advance the long-term goal of identifying interventions and treatments at the cellular, neurophysiological, and behavioral levels.