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Behavioral changes in albino rats due to repetitive heat stress of moderate level

Sudhanshu Agrawal, Deepika Gupta.


Background: There are a number of studies showing the effect of severe heat stress on behaviour. Severe heat stress has been well reported to cause changes in activity level, attitude/mood, and behaviour. But, the effect of repetitive heat stress of moderate level on all these parameters has not been studied extensively.

Aims & Objective: In the present study, the effect of repetitive heat stress of moderate level was assessed on activity level, attitude / mood, and behaviour (spontaneous and provoked) of adult albino male rats (wistar strain).

Material and Methods: The experimental animals were subjected to repetitive heat stress for 4 hours daily, at 37±0.5ºC in a Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) incubator (relative humidity 65-82%) for five consecutive days. Daily changes were assessed in activity level during and after heat exposure and in attitude / mood along with behaviour (both spontaneous and provoked) after heat exposure in experimental animals and compared with control animals.

Results: There was increased restlessness during heat exposure and decreased level of activity after heat exposure in experimental animals. The mood of the experimental animals was depressed and the experimental animals kept them isolated and did not respond on provoking after heat stress.

Conclusion: All the above observations confirmed that exposure to repetitive heat stress, even of moderate level, causes significant change in behaviour of male albino rats.

Key words: Provoked; Spontaneous Behaviour; Mood; Activity Level; Heat Exposure; Liver; Rat

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