Elizabeth A. Skillings

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The touchscreen testing method for rodents is a computer-automated behavioral testing method that allows computer graphic stimuli to be presented to rodents and the rodents to respond to the computer screen via a nose-poke directly to the stimulus. The advantages of this method are numerous; however, a systematic study of the parameters that affect learning(More)
BACKGROUND Environmental enrichment (EE) in laboratory animals improves neurological function and motor/cognitive performance, and is proposed as a strategy for treating neurodegenerative diseases. EE has been investigated in the R6/2 mouse model of Huntington's disease (HD), where increased social interaction, sensory stimulation, exploration, and physical(More)
The mean age recommended by veterinary practices for neutering kittens is 22.6 weeks, with only 28 per cent of veterinarians considering it appropriate to neuter 12- to 16-week-old kittens. Multivariable logistic regression was used to identify variables associated with veterinarians' opinion that 12 to 16 weeks is an appropriate age at which to neuter(More)
BACKGROUND In addition to their cognitive and motor deficits, R6/2 mice show a progressive disintegration in circadian rhythms that mirrors the problems associated with sleep-wake disturbances experienced by patients with Huntington's disease (HD). It has been shown previously that motor and cognitive performance, as well as survival, can be improved in(More)
A study was carried out to determine the prevalence of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) within a population of cats entering 10 UK adoption centres run by Cats Protection. All cats entering the adoption centres during 2004 were tested for FIV using a rapid enzyme immunoassay antibody test. The overall prevalence of positive test results was 3.1% (95%(More)
Trained service dogs assist and also add pride, self-reliance, and personal satisfaction to an individual's daily life. However, well-bred, trained dogs are very expensive. To explore decreasing the cost of a service dog by increasing the number of dogs successfully completing training, the authors analyzed tasks that service dogs are expected to perform,(More)
BACKGROUND Impairments in energy metabolism are implicated in Huntington's disease (HD) pathogenesis. Reduced levels of the mitochondrial enzyme succinate dehydrogenase (SDH), the main element of complex II, are observed post mortem in the brains of HD patients, and energy metabolism defects have been identified in both presymptomatic and symptomatic HD(More)
A case-control study was used to identify variables associated with the risk of mortality in cats housed at adoption centres. Multivariable logistic regression, based on retrospective data collected for 194 cases (cats that died or were euthanased) and 320 controls (cats that did not die) revealed an increased risk of mortality for cats admitted to adoption(More)
BACKGROUND Progressive cognitive impairments are a major, debilitating symptom of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Huntington's disease (HD). Developing treatments to slow or prevent cognitive decline is a key challenge for these fields. Unfortunately, preclinical therapeutic testing has not kept pace with molecular advances,(More)