Title:The effect of the predator odour TMT on the behaviour of mice and the possibility of its epigenetic transmission
The accuracy of anxiety studies using live animal trials is constantly challenged by the difficulty to create a controllable and yet easily triggered fear response in the test subjects. We proposed the predator odour 2,4,5-trimethylthiazoline (TMT) as a feasible stimulus to elicit anxiety in mice and investigated its effect. To examine if the fear response was present we used 10% and 100% TMT solutions and several control odours which included citronella as a neutral odour, MHA as an irritating odour, and a perfume as a neutral odour that the mice were acclimated to before the trial. The mice were separately placed in an open field for six-minute time intervals with each odour. In the first half of the six minutes, a hiding box was provided. We analyzed the recordings to find fear-related behaviour: moving away from the odour, hiding, freezing and burying. Additionally, we looked for a change in levels of movement, body position and grooming behaviour.