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Home » Archive » 2016

TDK conference 2016

The effects of odors upon weaned rats
Tóth Ibolya Mária - year 6
University of Veterinary Medicine, Institute for Animal Breeding, Nutrition and Laboratory Animal Science
Supervisor: Dr. Sándor György Fekete

Abstract:

The unknown environmental smell substances do influence the rodents' behaviour. Long-lasting presence of smells may cause a chronic stress of patophysiological importance. In the presence of natural carnivore smell molecules (kairomones) rats develop characteristic defensive and exploratory action catalogue. The irritative smells may trigger fear and aversion behaviour. In the present experiment the effects of neutral and irritative smells, as well as the synthetic trimethyl-tiol (TMT, the active substance of fox faeces) upon the action catalogue and placement of rats in the field, with the background pathophysiology and histology were studied.Twelve ChR (W1) BR SPF weaned male rats were investigated in 5 two-phased (with or without a hiding box) open-field test (OF): in the presence of a perfume (DKNY – Donna Karan New York), of 10% TMT, citronella (lemon grass) oil, methyl-hydroxy-analogue (MHA) and concentrated TMT. According to our results, the hiding during the exposure of diluted TMT, lasted longer period of time, than in case of the concentrated TMT and MHA. If no hiding box present, rats spent significantly more time far from the concentrated TMT- source, than from the MHA or the perfume. Without hiding place, under the influence of the diluted TMT, rats elicited watching around the environment, fear (i.e. crawling with flattened back) and escape (running) movement. The exploratory behavour (rearing) is typical mostly for the lemon grass oil. The sniffing was characteristic for the perfume and diluted TMT. The passive ethological elements were overwhelming under the influence of concentrated TMT and MHA. The grooming was generally rare, but the most frequent in the presence of citronella oil. Summerizing, the diluted synthetic TMT partly brings about the effect of fox faeces (practically no freezing). The concentrated TMT is a real repellent for the rats. The citronella smell represents a light stressor. Real freezing has been detected very rarely during the OF, showing that these treatment did not mean a substantial stressor for the rats. Final corticosteron values did not differ from the physiological ones and both necropsy and histopatology revealed no pathological alterations. Taken together, the short-term smell effects are not able to develop chronic stress. Further studies required to elucidade the long-term effects of smells and to differentiate between irritative and species-related effects of smells.



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