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Three-chamber sociability test

The three-chamber sociability test (sociability cage) is widely used in rodents to assess the social behavior of one individual towards others and interest in social novelty. Rodents normally prefer to spend more time with another rodent and will investigate a novel (unfamiliar) individual more than a familiar one.

The middle chamber is used as a starting point, while one or both wired cages in each of the other compartments contain a conspecific. To study the subject's interest in a social contact, one chamber presents a conspecific while the other remains empty.

In a preference test for social novelty, the two wired cages contain a familiar and an unfamiliar conspecifics.

The interest is measured by comparing the time spent in the two chambers with wired cages.

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Fig. 1
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Walls and floor: gray matte PVC. Cylinders: stainless steel wires, PVC, transparent acrylic caps.


  for mice
internal dimensions 60 х 40 х 40 cm
central chamber 20 х 40 cm
side chamber 19.5 х 40 cm
internal/external wired cage diameter 10 / 11.3 cm
wired cage height 20 cm
passages between chambers square, 5 х 5 cm

Key features

Passages can be closed with sliding doors. Walls which separate partitions can be removed for cleaning purposes.

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Fig. 2
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Fig. 3

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