Set up your system
Start your experiment in EthoVision XT from scratch or save time by using one of the predefined templates. Answer a couple of questions, like number of animals and arena/maze type, and EthoVision XT adjusts all the basic settings for you.
You can also save a current experiment as a template for future use.
The first step in any experiment is defining a trial list with all test subjects. Of course you can copy this data from an existing database, such as Microsoft Excel. The independent variables you define here (age, treatment group, gender, identification number, and more) are also used for your data selection and analysis later on.
Video tracking is only as powerful as the accuracy with which the animal is detected. So, detection is at the core of EthoVision XT. We designed five different models and four different detection methods to make sure EthoVision XT is suitable for a wide range of lab settings. While you can choose and adjust each one, EthoVision XT also automatically suggests your optimal settings – a real time-saver.
EthoVision XT can track from a prerecorded video file or via live feed from a camera mounted above (or aside) your arena. Your arena can be of any shape, such as an open field or a radial arm maze. Define your arena in 4 easy steps:
- Calibrate: set the actual size of the arena or another object in the video image so EthoVision XT can calculate parameters such as distance moved and velocity
- Draw the arena: use drawing tools to define borders to indicate where tracking should take place
- Draw zones: indicate areas of interest, such as a feeding area, shelter, outer border, water maze platform, etc. You can group zones, and use cumulative and hidden zones
- Validation: EthoVision XT checks if calibration succeeded and zones and areas of labelled correctly
Arenas and zones can be used in data selection and analysis. For DanioVision users, the definition of the zones of a well plate is done automatically.