Navigation Links
How can we measure the emotional states of animals?
Date:5/20/2008

Rats housed in standard conditions show a stronger response to the loss of an expected food reward than those housed in enriched conditions, perhaps indicating a more negative emotional state, according to new research by scientists at Bristol University Veterinary School, published in this week's issue of Royal Society Biology Letters.

The researchers have developed a new approach to the measurement of animal emotional states based on findings from human psychology that emotions affect information processing. In general, people are more sensitive to reward losses than gains, but depressed people are particularly sensitive to losses. The researchers wanted to know whether animals' sensitivity to reward loss might also be related to their emotional state.

Many studies have demonstrated beneficial welfare effects of enriched compared to barren housing, and the researchers found that rats housed in standard conditions, previously shown to experience poorer welfare than those housed in enriched conditions, were indeed more sensitive to the unanticipated loss of a food reward. Oliver Burman, Richard Parker, Liz Paul and Mike Mendl from the Centre for Behavioural Biology at Bristol University consider the research indicates that sensitivity to reward reduction may be a valuable new indicator of animal emotion and welfare.

"The study of animal emotion is an important emerging field in subjects ranging from neuroscience to animal welfare research. Whilst we cannot know for sure what other animals feel, our approach may provide improved methods for indirectly measuring animal emotion and welfare," said Professor Mendl.

Dr Burman further explained, "Parallel studies using this approach in humans and animals may also reveal cross-species commonalities in the influence of affect on reward evaluation. Our next step is to see whether other reward evaluation processes involving contrasts between expected and actual rewards also reflect background emotional state."


'/>"/>

Contact: Joanne Fryer
joanne.fryer@bristol.ac.uk
44-117-331-7276
University of Bristol
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Bioengineers at University of Pennsylvania devise nanoscale system to measure cellular forces
2. UCR engineers to develop new tool to measure how environmental exposures affect health
3. New microsensor measures volatile organic compounds in water and air on-site
4. Unprecedented global measurement network achieves full coverage of oceans
5. Measurement Specialties, Inc. Announces Impact of German Business Tax Reform 2008 Resulting in Lower Combined German Tax Rate - Impacts 2Q08 Reported Financial Results
6. US government delays nanotechnology safety measures
7. Worldwide atmospheric measurements will determine the role of atmospheric fine particles
8. Scientists develop new measure of socioclimactic risk
9. Penn engineers create carbon nanopipettes that are smaller than cells and measure electric current
10. NASA satellite measures pollution from east Asia to North America
11. LDL particle measurement by NMR recognized by ADA, ACC
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/8/2016)... PRAGUE, Czech Republic , February 8, 2016 ... first EU-regulated global payment platform which presents innovation ... Voice Biometrics Authentication feature called VoiceKey. --> ... payment platform which presents innovation for clients, comfort ... feature called VoiceKey. --> Worldcore ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... LONDON , Feb. 4, 2016 ... is apparently one of the most popular hubs ... Project, MetaHIT and other huge studies of human ... that past few years, the microbiome space has ... applied biomedical research. This report focuses on ...
(Date:2/3/2016)... -- --> --> ... Identification System Market by Component (Hardware and Software), Search ... Government, Healthcare, and Transportation) and Geography - Global Forecast ... to be worth USD 8.49 Billion by 2020 at ... The transformation and technology evolution from the manual process ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... and LONDON , February 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... tech replace paper and protect IP   ... laboratory notebook (ELN) will be rolled out in ... and development (R&D) and protect valuable IP. Users will be ... a specific researcher or experiment as part of the application, ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... 9, 2016 DelveInsight,s, ... report provides in depth insights on the ... the Protein-Tyrosine Phosphatase 1B (PTP1B) Inhibitors. The ... various stages of development including Discovery, Pre-clinical, ... and Preregistration. Report covers the product clinical ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... 2016  CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: CYTR ), ... oncology, today announced that it has entered into ... Technology Growth Capital, Inc. and Hercules Technology III, ... --> --> ... financing under the loan and security agreement.  The ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Thomas J. Todorow has joined the University ... Corporate Services and the Chief Financial Officer at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia ... Care Contracting, Supply Chain, and Investments. , Prior to joining CHOP and The ...
Breaking Biology Technology: