Video-tracking the effect of influenza infection on ferrets

Video-tracking the effect of influenza infection on ferrets

Posted by Guest Blogger on Fri 10 Apr. 2015 - 1 minute read

A guest blogpost by Ding Yuan Oh, PhD

Conventional ferret activity measurements by human observation

Ferrets are the ideal animal model to assess influenza virus infection and pathogenicity as they display similar clinical symptoms to humans such as sneezing, fever and lethargy. Conventionally, lethargy or ferret activity is determined manually by an observer. However, this method is prone to bias and requires trained personnel to recognise subtle changes in individual ferret activity.

Simple and less subjective method by video-tracking

We assessed the usefulness of EthoVision XT as an alternative method to measure ferret activity throughout the course of influenza virus infection. We utilise mobility measurements such as activity, distance and velocity in EthoVision XT as a read-out of the ‘activity level’ of ferrets.

In contrast to the conventional manual observation method, video-tracking by EthoVision XT proved to be a more sensitive method in detecting a reduction in ferret activity level after influenza infection. Not only does video-tracking provide greater detection sensitivity, it also simplifies the process of activity measurement by eliminating the reliance on trained personnel and being less subjective than the conventional method.

Wide application to other ferret model of infection

Our study is the first to use video-tracking to monitor the activity of ferrets. The ferret is a widely used animal model for studying influenza infection and is beginning to be adopted as a model for other infectious viruses such as Hendra virus, Nipah virus and SARS-CoV. Therefore, we anticipate that this improved method could be used to study both the pathogenesis of different viruses and the effectiveness of existing and novel therapeutic interventions in a ferret model. 









FREE TRIAL: Try EthoVision XT yourself!

Request a free trial and find out what EthoVision XT can do for your research!

  • A cost-effective solution
  • Powerful data selection
  • Most cited video tracking system


Reference

Read more in the complete study:

Oh, D.Y.; Barr, I.G.; Hurt, A.C. (2015). A Novel Video Tracking Method to Evaluate the Effect of Influenza Infection and Antiviral Treatment on Ferret Activity. PLoS ONE, 10(3): e0118780. 

Subscribe to the blog
Share this post
Topics
Learn
more
Relevant Blogs
data-integration-horse-studies

Brain & behavior: data integration in horse studies

EEG recordings – they produce useful data, but are not always easy to obtain in animal studies. You can’t really ask a horse to sit still, so these researchers invented a promising new system for EEG recording.
home-cage-testing

Why it is smart to test your animal in its home cage

Behavior of laboratory rodents is often studied in well-controlled, simple experiments, in an environment that is fundamentally different from the animal’s home cage.
aphid-predators

Ladybugs and lacewings do not spy on their prey’s alarm pheromone

Leaf sucking creatures like plant aphids are common and can cause considerable damage to plants. Therefore, quite a lot of effort is made to control these tiny creatures.