1. Neuroscience
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Social Status: Modulating chronic stress

  1. Debra A Bangasser  Is a corresponding author
  2. Evelyn Ordoñes Sanchez
  1. Department of Psychology and Neuroscience Program, Temple University, United States
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Cite this article as: eLife 2020;9:e63996 doi: 10.7554/eLife.63996
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Assessing the effect of social status on chronic mild stress (CMS).

(A) To study how social rank might influence an individual’s response to chronic stress, Karamihalev et al. kept male and female mice in an automated behavioral monitoring system called the Social Box. The animals lived in same sex groups and were monitored for four days to evaluate their social rank at baseline. On Day 5, mice were subjected to acute stress and then put back in the Social Box to assess social rank. The followinig day, male and female mice were exposed to CMS or standard group housing for 21 days. Following this, all groups of mice had to complete six behavioral tasks, aimed at capturing their activity and aspects of anxiety-like or depression-like behaviors. (B) The dominance behavior of male and female mice was evaluated with a David’s Score (a higher score indicates more dominance). An example relationship between social status and one behavior (the distance traveled in the open field test (OFT)) is depicted. The boxplots show the effect of exposure to stress or the control environment for females (top orange and red) or males (bottom turquois and teal). The correlations for CMS mice (right boxes) indicate the opposite relationship between distance traveled and the David’s Score for females and males (boxplots: line indicates median value, scales for behavioral outcomes are relative to female controls).

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