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Home Cage Analyzer (ActualHCA)

ActualHCA - ActualHCA (Home Cage Analyzer)


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Home Cage Analyzer


24x7Data Capture and Analysis of Complex Behaviors of Group Housed Rodents in theirReal Home Cage!

Rodent behavioranalysis plays a vital role in drug discovery, from the development of diseasemodels through to safety pharmacology. ActualAnalytics has developed aninnovative home cage analysis system that provides 24/7 monitoring of rodentbehaviors in a group-housed environment that is beneficial from both data andwelfare perspectives. This is the next generation of Rodent analysis technologysurpassing all other technologies and methods available today.

ActualHCA is anadd-on system to rodent home cage systems. It is compatible with a range of ratand mouse homecages and racking systems including IVC systems. The system sitesalongside a normal homecage and collects data from the group of animals in theadjacent cage.

Main Features:

  • Monitoring of animals in their normal homecage

  • Compatible with normal social group housed animals

  • Identity is retained

  • Automatic annotation of behaviors and activity

  • 24/7 Recordings

ActualHCA hasthree core elements to the product:

1. Capture

  • Each system comes with all the hardware and software you need to capture your data

  • It comprises an RFID baseplate, HD infrared camera, mini computer, lighting, and all of the necessary software to capture your data 24/7

  • You can network multiple units together and link them to a central server for processing

  • Each cage can stand alone, be networked in a small local network, or connected to your main network

2. Analyze

  • Our system provides very high quality data.

3. Discover

  • Locomoter - distance moved, speed, thigmotaxis, zone occupancy, inactivity/sleep, circadian rhythms

  • Social Interactions - avoidance behavior, following, clustering/grouping, climbing, rearing

  • Development - drinking, feeding, stretching, grooming, aggression, juvenile play, nest building, tremors/seizures, gaze detection, mating

How it Works:

ActualHCAcombines two technical approaches to the problem - Under each cage sites alow-profile 2D array of RFID readers. As the rodents move around their identityand approximate position are recorded. The homecage is also illuminated by anarray of infrared lights and the cage video recorded in HD quality. Analyticalsoftware then processes the data and automatically extracts key behavioralevents. An optional feature can also enable the system to record thetemperature of each animal.


  • Enables continuous 24h monitoring over days and weeks

  • Increases the information content of existing study types

  • Animals are housed in social groups

  • Non-invasive (other than a subcutaneously injected RFID microchip)

  • No modifications to standard housing cages required

  • Modules fit inside standard IVC cage rack, so do not require a dedicated room

  • Can be incorporated into existing study types (without the use of additional animals)

  • Future developments include automated detection of convulsive behaviors

Examples ofPotential Use:

1. PreclinicalSafety Assessment

  • Can slot into existing study types: safety pharmacology studies and repeat-dose toxicology studies

  • Will detect the previously undetectable: 24h activity, 24h temperature, 24h behavioral analysis, and the occurrence of convulsions outside normal manual monitoring hours

  • Could identify "at risk" individuals to back-up/pre-warn welfare decision making

2. Drugwithdrawal phenomena

  • Different classes of drugs with dependence potential cause different patterns of effects on cessation of treatment. However, these usually include changes in activity, behavior, temperature, and food intake.

3. CNS DrugDiscovery

  • Can slot into existing disease models

  • Will detect 24h activity, 24h temperature, 24h behavioral analysis, and the occurrence of convulsions outside normal manual monitoring hours

4. AcademicResearch: Disease Models

  • Various applications - could identify "at risk" individuals to back-up welfare decision making

5. AcademicResearch: Circadian Rhythms, Ageing

  • Various applications

6. AcademicResearch: Phenotyping