Short-term auditory priming in freely-moving miceDOI
Priming, a change in the mental processing of a stimulus as a result of prior encounter with a related stimulus, has been observed repeatedly and studied extensively. Yet currently there is no behavioral model of short-term priming in lab animals, limiting the study of the neurobiological basis of priming. Here, we describe an auditory discrimination paradigm for studying response priming in freely-moving mice. We find a priming effect in success rate in all mice tested on the task. In contrast to humans, we do not find a priming effect in response times. Compared to non-primed discrimination trials, the addition of incongruent prime stimuli reduces success rate more than congruent prime stimuli, suggesting a cognitive mechanism based on differential interference. The results establish the short-term priming phenomenon in rodents, and the paradigm opens the door to studying the cellular-network basis of priming.