Behavioural profiles in captive-bred cynomolgus macaques: towards monkey models of mental disorders?

Sandrine M. J. Camus, Catherine Blois-Heulin, Qin Li, Martine Hausberger, Erwan Bezard
PLoS ONE. 2013-04-29; 8(4): e62141
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062141

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1. PLoS One. 2013 Apr 29;8(4):e62141. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062141. Print 2013.

Behavioural profiles in captive-bred cynomolgus macaques: towards monkey models
of mental disorders?

Camus SM(1), Blois-Heulin C, Li Q, Hausberger M, Bezard E.

Author information:
(1)Université de Bordeaux, Institut des Maladies Neurodégénératives, UMR 5293,
Bordeaux, France.

BACKGROUND: To date, experimental and preclinical studies on neuropsychiatric
conditions have almost exclusively been performed in experimentally-induced
animal models and have only rarely relied upon an ethological approach where
animals have been observed in more naturalistic settings. The laboratory species
of choice has been the rodent while the potential of more closely-related
non-human primates have remained largely underexplored.
METHODS: The present study, therefore, aimed at investigating the possible
existence of spontaneous atypical/abnormal behaviours displayed by 40 cynomolgus
macaques in captive conditions using an unbiased ethological scan-sampling
analysis followed by multifactorial correspondence analysis and a hierarchical
RESULTS: The study identified five distinct profiles (groups A to E) that
significantly differed on several behaviours, body postures, body orientations,
gaze directions and locations in the cage environment. We suggest that animals
from the low n groups (D and E) present depressive-like and anxious-like
symptoms, reminiscent of depressive and generalized anxiety disorders.
Inter-individual differences were highlighted through unbiased ethological
observations of spontaneous behaviours and associated parameters, although these
were not associated with differences in plasma or cerebrospinal fluid levels of
either stress-related hormones or monoamines, i.e. in accordance with the human
CONCLUSIONS: No interventional behavioural testing was required to discriminate
between 3 typical and 2 atypical ethologically-defined behavioural profiles,
reminiscent of certain depressive-like and anxiety-like symptoms. The use of
unbiased behavioural observations might, thus, allow the identification of animal
models of human mental/behavioural disorders and their most appropriate control

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0062141
PMCID: PMC3639229
PMID: 23658620 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

Auteurs Bordeaux Neurocampus