Improving biomedical research by automated behaviour monitoring in the animal home-cage

Animal use for scientific purposes is guided by the principles of 3Rs (Replacement, Reduction, Refinement)

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Aims of the Teatime Action

The aim of this Action is to bring together European organizations developing and using automated home-cage monitoring technologies

Novel and emerging technologies allow 24/7 collection of behavioural data in their home cage. However, addressing the complex problem of monitoring the full 24-hour behavioural repertoire of a rodent still presents many challenges, with each technology having its strengths and limitations. This Action combines experts in mouse behaviour, laboratory animal science and data science, to critically and transparently assess the potential of these technologies.

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Research Coordination

  • Work Groups 1 and 2: By using the network, complete a comparison of the current state-of-the-art and future requirements for home-cage monitoring (HCM) systems by surveying of the wider community, performing a literature review and collecting information about current research using HCM
  • Work Group 2: Determine strengths and future requirements for HCM by comparing experimental design and parameters measured in members’ laboratories and sharing the baseline data collected
  • Work Groups 2 and 3: Develop a common understanding of the technical and scientific improvements needed, based on evaluation of existing HCM systems and collaboration with small and medium enterprises (SMEs) responsible for technical improvements who are part of the Action
  • Work Group 3: Determine ways to potentially integrate datasets from the different HCM systems available to Action participants
  • Work Group 5: Communicate results of comparisons and evaluations to the wider research community and inform stakeholders, to help promote the use of HCM

Capacity Building

  • Develop a new network of researchers and other stakeholders across Europe to reduce fragmentation of HCM development and share best practice on their development and use (WG1).
  • Establish stakeholders and communication channels and possibilities for knowledge transfer to promote the emerging field of HCM research (WG4-WG5).
  • Encourage the use of HCM by using the breadth of knowledge and expertise available in the network to exchange knowledge through training (WG4) and communication and dissemination (WG5)
  • Develop new lasting forums to bridge behavioural and data science to achieve breakthroughs in the integration and analysis of complex data sets (WG3)
  • Establish a European network of mouse behaviour analysts ensuring representation from Early Career Investigators and researchers from countries with less capacity in the field of home-cage monitoring including ITC (WG1)

Available Grants

Here's how you can get involved with the Teatime Action' activities. From training schools to conferences join Teatime in one of our upcoming events

Open Call for Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSMs)

31st March 2023

Do you want to visit a laboratory in another country to work with home-cage monitoring?

Find out more

Open Call for ITC Conference Grants

31st March 2023

Are you a Young Researcher (under 40 years old)? Do you work with home-cage monitoring and want attend an international conference to present your work?

Find out more

Upcoming events

Here's how you can get involved with the Teatime Action' activities. From training schools to conferences join Teatime in one of our upcoming events

AMBER: automated maternal behavior during early life in rodents

28th February 2023

Hannah Lapp of the University of Austin, Texas will be presenting this webinar at 3 pm CET on 28th February

Find out more

Introducing a depression-like syndrome for translational neuropsychiatry

23rd March 2023

Iven Mücke-Heim of MPI Psychiatry, Germany will be presenting their recent review at 3 pm CET on 23rd March

Find out more

Scand-LAS 2023 Symposium

25th April 2023

In April 2023, we are attending the Scand-LAS 2023 Symposium in Uppsala, Sweden

Find out more

Action Results

Here are a list of available documents produced by the Teatime Action for you to download. View our full list of documents on the resources page

TEATIME Introductory Training School Manual 2022

658.96 KB · pdf

Annual Report 2022

1.06 MB · pdf

Memorandum of Understanding

1.08 MB · pdf

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Keep up to date with everything coming out of the Action

  • COST Teatime

    @COST_TEATIME · 4h

    @UiTNorgesarktis The Arctic University of #Norway is recruiting young researchers planning to apply for a Marie Skƚodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship to pursue a career in research in behavioral & systems #neuroscience, #machine learning and #data science. https://t.co/zRMGN1nxSG

  • COST Teatime

    @COST_TEATIME · 4h

    If you're free this afternoon, you can listen to our Ethics and 3Rs Officer @Nuno_H_Franco. Registration info 👇. #seminar #education #AnimalWelfare #ExperimentalDesign #knowledgetransfer #3Rs https://t.co/m4rdaFQJgG

  • COST Teatime

    @COST_TEATIME · 4h

    Meet our Action leader @VVoikar! #COSTAction #3Rs #refinement @fin3rc https://t.co/KkiWVc31Aj

  • COST Teatime

    @COST_TEATIME · 4h

    🥳 Also our 3rd scientific paper is out at @PLOSONE! Congratulations to our member @LLewejohann. This time it is based on a RFID-based tracking system. #animalresearch #InMice #enrichment #RFID #monitoring #homecage #refinement #housing #3Rs #AnimalWelfare https://t.co/jrTOnmdtpN

  • COST Teatime

    @COST_TEATIME · 4h

    🔔The next #COST_TEATIME webinar is already tomorrow‼️ Bálint Király & Balázs Hangya will say about mice's efficient, stress-free learning in a fully #automated training system. ⏰ 3 pm CET, 24th January 📨Email to register: COST-TEATIME@har.mrc.ac.uk #AnimalBehavior #COSTAction https://t.co/3MlmybJFb8

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    Have expertise that will shine in our COST Action? Applications can be made through the COST website

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