Activity 17.9 Morris Water Maze, PDAPP Mouse
(Trial 3)

In this water maze task, a mouse must find a platform located below the opaque water surface. Mice can use cues surrounding the maze, such as posters on the wall, to learn the location of the platform and find it more quickly on successive trials. Two mice appear in these videos: One is a normal, nontransgenic mouse, the other a transgenic mouse engineered as an animal model of Alzheimer's disease. Such transgenic (PDAPP) mice develop beta-amyloid plaques similar to those found in the brains of human Alzheimer's patients. Both mice were "middle-aged" (about 17 months) at the time of the trials.

This video shows the third trial for the transgenic mouse. Although the normal mouse was able to swim directly to the platform on the third trial (in 10.9 seconds), the transgenic mouse is unable to find the platform and is removed after the maximum time allowed for a trial (90 seconds).

Textbook Reference: Synaptic Plasticity Can Be Measured in Simple Hippocampal Circuits, p. 539

Video courtesy of Stephen Martin and Richard Morris, Department of Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh.