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Male mice exhibit better spatial working and reference memory than females in a water-escape radial arm maze task



Male mice exhibit better spatial working and reference memory than females in a water-escape radial arm maze task



Brain Research 982(1): 98-107, 22 August



The present study examined sex differences in spatial working and reference memory in C57BL/6 mice. Males and females were tested in a version of the spatial 8-arm radial arm maze in which the motivating stimulus was escape from water. To test spatial working memory, four arms were baited with submerged escape platforms, each of which was removed after it was found. Four arms that never contained platforms assessed spatial reference memory. In addition to determining the number of working memory and reference memory errors made in each session, working memory errors made in each trial were analyzed to examine performance as the number of arms to be remembered (i.e. the working memory load) increased. Males committed significantly fewer working memory and reference memory errors than females throughout testing. Within a session, males committed fewer working memory errors than females as the working memory load increased. These sex differences were particularly evident during task acquisition. The data indicate that male C57BL/6 mice learn both the working and reference memory components of a water-escape motivated radial arm maze task better than female mice.

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Accession: 010951430

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 12915244

DOI: 10.1016/s0006-8993(03)03000-2


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