Modular approach

EthoVision XT has a modular approach, resulting in a system that is flexible and versatile, and which provides a platform to build on for the future. Configurations range from basic video tracking software to a multi-functional system.

EthoVision XT base

The Base version of EthoVision XT gives you all you need to track and analyze the movement, activity, and behavior of one animal in one arena at a time. It guides you through all phases of your experiment, from setting up your project to detailed analysis of the data acquired. You can perform a wide range of experiments, including common applications like the open field, the Morris water maze, and an elevated plus maze.

  • Reliably detect and track your animal even when there is low contrast. 
  • Use EthoVision XT in any type of arena, enclosure, or maze.  
  • Acquire data using a live video feed or from prerecorded video files. 
  • Save time and reduce human errors by automating your experiments.
  • Analyze animal movement, activity and behavior.

Tracking multiple body points

Multiple Body Points Module

Add the Multiple Body Points Module if you want to track the nose-point and tail-base in addition to the center point of your rats, mice, or zebrafish. Accurately analyze the position of the rodent’s nose in relation to for instance objects in the novel object recognition test. The proximity of the animal's nose to a certain object, or the direction the animal's head is pointed towards are very informative parameters when studying memory in rats or mice. 

You can also use this module to more accurately analyze entrances into the arms of an elevated plus maze. Define which body points should have entered the arms before ‘an entry’ is counted. Or analyze feeding and drinking behavior of the animal based on the nose point’s proximity to the feeder or water bottle.

The Multiple Body Points Module is designed for top-view tracking. 

multiple body points
The EthoVision XT Multiple Body Points module...
multiple body points
...adds accuracy to object recognition, plus maze, social interaction, and other tests.

Track in multiple arenas simultaneously

Multiple Arenas Module

While most systems cannot track in more than eight arenas, EthoVision XT’s Multiple Arenas Module gives you the opportunity to track animals in up to one hundred arenas simultaneously. Increase your throughput by analyzing animal behavior in four, eight, or even sixteen open fields at the same time, or track small organisms in multi-well plates. 

With EthoVision XT you can define start and stop conditions to be applied to each arena individually. When the condition is true for one of the arenas, tracking starts in that arena only. So there is no need to place all your animals in their arenas at the exact same time. A great example for the use of this module is monitoring zebrafish larvae activity in a 96 well plate. (In fact, we have a dedicated solution for this purpose: DanioVision.)

Study social behavior

Social Interaction Module

Social interaction tests in rats and mice is a commonly used paradigm in research on anxiety, aggression, schizophrenia, and other psychiatric disorders. With the Social Interaction Module you can track multiple animals per arena simultaneously and calculate a list of social parameters, such as the proximity of one animal to another or the amount of time an animal spent moving away from another animal. 

When the Social Interaction Module is used in combination with the Multiple Body Points Module, nose-nose interactions and nose-tail interactions of rodents can also be analyzed.

Automatically recognize rodent behaviors

Rat Behavior Recognition Module 
Mouse Behavior Recognition Module

Traditionally, human observers are trained to recognize rat behaviors. This takes time, is prone to repeatability issues, and is inherently subjective. EthoVision XT’s Rat Behavior Recognition Module is objective, accurate, and tireless. Independent of rat strain, set-up, or duration of the trial, the following behaviors are scored continuously: eating, drinking, unsupported rearing, supported rearing, grooming, sniffing, walking, resting, jumping, and twitching. Read more...

rat behavior recognition groom
Rat Behavior Recognition in EthoVision XT automatically recognizes ten rat behaviors...
rat behavior recognition rear wall
...including grooming and supported and unsupported rearing. 

Integrate physiological and other external data

External Data Module

Physiological data, such as heart rate, blood pressure, and neuronal activity, and other external data, like vocalizations and environmental temperature or humidity, can all add valuable information complementary to your behavioral data (tracking and activity data and automatic or manually gathered behavioral events from EthoVision XT). With the new External Data Module you can truly integrate these data, meaning that you can visualize it in sync and also base analysis of behavioral and tracking data on these external streams (e.g. behaviors that occur during certain neuronal activity, or body temperature), and analyze behavioral information in parallel with the external data. 

Read more about how to use EthoVision XT as an integration platform here.

Integrate and control external equipment

Trial & Hardware Control Module

Complete automation of research saves time, effort, and money. Not only does it make things easier, more importantly it enhances the reliability and validity of your results. This is what the Trial & Hardware Control Module offers: it lets you control external equipment from within EthoVision XT and define experiment protocols. Automation can be as simple as triggering the Atlantis Platform in a Morris water maze task, or more complex as with learning tasks in the PhenoTyper, for instance turn on a light and drop a food pellet when a mouse climbs on top of its shelter and stays there for 5 seconds. This module is ideal in combination with PhenoTyper, but you can attach any standard (TTL-based) hardware. 

Trial and Hardware Control can be used in a wide variety of research fields. Click one of the links below to read more:

Interested to see if you can incorporate Trial & Hardware control in your own research? We can help you out!

Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance Module

The Quality Assurance Module ensures the protection of your data. Unauthorized persons cannot open the experiment and you can assign different rights to different users. For example, give full rights to the professor, but limit the students’ options in order to safeguard your data. This module also logs all changes and settings in the project, so you can always look back and see what happened. This helps in making your experiment GLP (Good Laboratory Practice) compliant, thus meeting 21 CFR Part 11 requirements. Read more...

Tracking in 3D

Track3D

If you want to track your animals, for example fish or insects, in three instead of two dimensions, you can use Track3D to combine the EthoVision XT tracking data from two camera angles into a 3D trajectory for visualization and analysis. Read more about Track3D here