Neurobehavior Testing

Overview of Services

The Neurobehavior Testing Core provides testing and analysis of behavior output in mice. Founded in 2012 with generous support from the Perelman School of Medicine Core Facilities, ITMAT, Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology and PMNC, the core can serve PIs from all departments of the University of Pennsylvania, CHoP and other institutes (private or academic). Administrative functions are managed by the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics (ITMAT), where Dr. Garrett FitzGerald serves as our Faculty Director. Day to day operation is directed by Dr. William “Tim” O’Brien and our research specialists, Arnold Gonzalez and Brianna Ciesielski. We are happy to announce that the Neurobehavior Testing Core is part of the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (IDDRC) at CHOP/UPenn and provides behavior testing services to CHOP investigators. Projects from other academic institutions and industry are also welcome.


A major strength of the Neurobehavior Core is the diversity of behavior domains that we are capable of investigating. We routinely perform sensory and motor assessment, affective disorder-related procedures, social and communication assays, learning and memory tests and developmental measures. Ancillary services include some surgeries, drug delivery, tissue harvest and assistance with grant or manuscript preparation. We may also be able to provide training on your equipment. Custom batteries of behavior procedures are designed to address the specific questions of individual PIs.

How to use the core:

After an initial consultation to discuss the aims and scope of a project, an experimental design is established and an estimate is provided. Mice are transferred to the core IACUC protocol and relocated to our facilities on the sixth floor of the Smilow Center for Translational Research. All data and digital recording of procedures performed are returned to the PI. Personnel from the PI lab can be amended to our protocol and trained to perform the procedures at reduced cost. Access to our core through iLab software allows the PI or user the ability to schedule and assess the progress of their projects. The NTC staff works closely with ULAR and IACUC to ensure the best care for your mice and compliance with AAALAC regulations.


There are over 60 procedures approved on our IACUC protocol and we are happy to work up new procedures whenever feasible. While our ITMAT website pages are under construction, we invite you to visit our core facilities webpage: The Neurobehavior Testing Core.
A sampling of recent work that our core has contributed to can be found at Core Publications.

Leadership

W. "Tim" O'Brien Ph.D. Director, Neurobehavior Testing Core

(215) 898-0476

obrienw@pennmedicine.upenn.edu

Garret FitzGerald Ph.D.- Director, Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics
Faculty Director
(215) 898-1185
garret@upenn.edu

Location and hours of operation

Hours Location

Facility Hours: 24/7

Staffed Hours: Monday-Friday, 7:00am-5:00pm

6th Floor Smilow Center for Translational Research

3400 Civic Center Blvd Bldg 421

Philadelphia, PA 19104

Links and Resources

  1. Behavior Testing Core Site
  2. additional ITMAT site to be developed

Contacts

Name Role Phone Email Location
W. Timothy O'Brien
Director
 
(215) 898-0476
 
obrienw@pennmedicine.upenn.edu
 
10-133 Smilow Center for Translational Research
 
Charles Molli
Business Administrator
 
(215) 898-7335
 
cmolli@upenn.edu
 
10th Floor; Room 10-153 Smilow Center for Translational Research
 
Arnold Gonzalez
Research Specialist
 

 
goarnold@pennmedicine.upenn.edu
 
6th Floor; Room 6-156 Smilow Center for Translational Research
 
Brianna Ciesielski
Research Specialist
 

 
bcies@pennmedicine.upenn.edu
 
6th Floor; Room 6-156 Smilow Center for Translational Research