ESR 15

Development of a novel and comprehensive test panel to evaluate cognitive functions for regulatory drug development

Location(s): Covance Preclinical Services GMbH, Münster, Germany and German Primate Center (DPZ) Göttingen, Germany

Supervisors: Dr D. Smieja, Dr L. Mecklenburg, Prof Dr S. Treue, Prof Dr A. Gail 

Development/safety assessment of modern and highly targeted human medicines often require NHPs as the relevant animal model. A frequently encountered question from regulatory agencies is whether such medications could have (adverse) effects on brain function – e.g. for compounds that cause brain histologic changes, that are being deposited in the brain or that just cross the blood-brain-barrier. Clinically, cognitive function can be monitored by touch screen based cognitive tests using a CANTAB device. This project aims at developing a behavioural cognitive task panel using MonkeyCANTAB. Project goals are to establish a novel home cage-based testing paradigm, to validate the test panel using compounds that interfere with learning/memory capabilities and to compare test performance in juvenile and adult macaques.

Behavioural paradigm: Visual and spatial discrimination, working memory paradigm, self-ordered search, macaques directly interacts with a computer from their home cage

Planned secondment(s):

  • Newcastle University (UK)
  • Ludwig-Maximilians University 

Contact: email Dr Mecklenburg

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