Characterizing social behavior in genetically targeted mouse models of brain disorders

Emma L. Burrows, Anthony J. Hannan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Fragile X syndrome, the leading inherited cause of mental retardation and autism spectrum disorders worldwide, is caused by a tandem repeat expansion in the FMR1 (fragile X mental retardation 1) gene. It presents with a distinct behavioral phenotype which overlaps significantly with that of autism. Emerging evidence suggests that tandem repeat polymorphisms (TRPs) might also play a key role in modulating disease susceptibility for a range of common polygenic disorders, including the broader autism spectrum of disorders (ASD) and other forms of psychiatric illness such as schizophrenia, depression, and bipolar disorder [1]. In order to understand how TRPs and associated gene mutations mediate pathogenesis, various mouse models have been generated. A crucial step in such functional genomics is high-quality behavioral and cognitive phenotyping. This chapter presents a basic behavioral battery for standardized tests for assaying social phenotypes in mouse models of brain disorders, with a focus on aggression.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTandem repeats in genes, proteins, and disease
Subtitle of host publicationmethods and protocols
EditorsDanny M. Hatters, Anthony J. Hannan
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherHumana Press Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781627034388
ISBN (Print)9781627034371
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameMethods in Molecular Biology
PublisherHumana Press
ISSN (Print)1064-3745


  • aggression
  • autism
  • fragile X syndrome
  • mouse model


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