Open Field Activity Meter: Opto-Varimex-5 with Auto-Track Software

Open Field Activity Meter: Opto-Varimex-5 with Auto-Track Software

The Columbus Instruments new Opto-Varimex-5 Auto Track System is the latest implementation of our animal activity meter. The Auto-Track is an advanced system using the latest technology to quantify locomotor activity and trace the animal's path for behavioral analysis. Systems can support up to 8 stations on a single PC and come complete with cages, sensors, brackets, interface, and Windows software.

The Auto-Track System senses motion with a grid of infrared photocells placed around the arena (typically 17.5" x 17.5" (44.5 cm), but other sizes are available). Vertical motion is detected by a second array of photocells placed above the animal.

The simultaneous interruption of beams along the horizontal axes (X & Y) provide coordinates that identify animal location. Vertical motion is scored and stored with the horizontal position data. The software records these coordinates for later playback and analysis. Suitable manipulation of the recorded pattern by analysis methods can reveal subtle changes in animal behavior over the course of an experiment, between experiments, and / or between animals.

This product is the modern implementation that replaces these Legacy Products:

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Raw Data Storage

Auto-Track complies with GLP requirements for maintenance of an unalterable original data set. Auto-Track "raw" data files are in a binary format that allows for re-examination and recreation of processed parameters. The file can not be edited without flagging an error that causes Auto-Track to reject the altered file.

Real-Time Monitoring

Auto-Track provides tools for monitoring experiment progress during execution. Single cage and multiple cage monitoring occurs in real-time and is available in numerical/tabular as well as graphical form.

Validation of System Operation

For purposes of validation, real time monitoring may be employed to assess that all beams are functional and that the system is operating to factory specifications. Diagnostic procedure within the system provides documented methods for assessing system performance.

Staggered Start

Auto-Track allows ad-hoc initiation of an experiment on a cage by cage basis. Experiments bound by temporally critical procedures and/or specific dosage response characteristics can be accommodated by Auto-Tracks ability to start/stop each cage independently.

Re-Analysis of Data

Auto-Track maintains a minute-by-minute record of all scored parameters. Alternate time-binning of the data is supported with one minute temporal resolution. The resulting "re-binned" data set may be stored for further evaluation using third party statistical tools.

Time in Square (TIS) Analysis

Auto-Track continuously monitors animal presence in each of 16 square regions (a 4x4 matrix). Each square is individually scored for number of entries and latency (time within square) by the animal for each interval.

Data Collected

  • The interval number (Int)
  • The cage number (C#)
  • The interval start time (Start)
  • The interval stop time (Stop)
  • The distance in centimeters traveled by the subject during the interval (DT cm)
  • The resting time (no movement detected) in seconds (RT sec)
  • The stereotypic time (small movements) in seconds (ST sec)
  • The ambulatory time (large ambulatory movement) in seconds (AT sec)
  • Bursts of stereotypic movement (BSM)
  • Horizontal counts - the combined total of all X and Y axis counts (HC)
  • Ambulatory counts - combined X and Y, but only for new beam breaks (AC)
  • Vertical sensor counts - total counts from the Z axis sensor (V1C)
  • Vertical sensor breaks - single vertical rearing events with one second between (V1B)
  • Clockwise rotations (optional) (CR)
  • Counter-clockwise rotations (optional) (CCR)
  • Second vertical sensor (V axis) counts (V2C)
  • Second vertical sensor (V axis) breaks (V2B)

Complete Systems

Standard Open Field Setup for Mice and Rats:

17.5" x 17.5" arena with 1" beam spacing
0170-R1Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 1 animal
0170-R2Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 2 animals
0170-R4Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 4 animals
0170-R8Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 8 animals

Mini Open Field Setup for Mice Only:

9.5" x 9.5" arena with 0.5" beam spacing
0170-M1Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 1 animal
0170-M2Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 2 animals
0170-M4Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 4 animals
0170-M8Auto-Track/Opto-Varimex-5 System for 8 animals

Optional & Replacement Items

Hole Poke:

0150-HPMOpto-Varimex-5 Hole Poke Kit for Mice
0150-HPROpto-Varimex-5 Hole Poke Kit for Rats

Light/Dark Box:

0150-LDBOpto-Varimex-5 Light / Dark Box for Mice and Rats

Isolation Cabinet:

0150-ISOOpto-Varimex-5 Isolation Cabinet

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