Indexed on: 03 Jun '21Published on: 19 Nov '19Published in: Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE
A Morris water maze (MWM) experiment forces experimental animals to swim and learn to find a platform hidden in the water. It is widely used in scientific research to assess the learning and memory of animals. Due to the extensive use of the MWM test, visual experimental protocols are essential for researchers. This manuscript uses the latest studies to introduce the protocol of the MWM test. Alzheimer' Disease (AD) is characterized by a progressive loss of memory and cognitive function. An alternative and complementary treatment used for AD is Manual Acupuncture (MA). To assess the learning and memory ability of AD model mice, the MWM test was conducted. The visible platform trial, hidden platform trial, probe trial, and reversal trial of MWM were used to evaluate spatial learning and memory ability. In the visible platform trial, the swimming speed and escape latency of mice in different groups was not significantly different. In the hidden platform and reversal trials, the AD group showed a long escape latency. The escape latency decreased significantly after the MA treatment. Low platform crossover number and the proportion of time in the SW quadrant in the probe trial increased after the MA treatment (p < 0.05 or p < 0.01). The results of the MWM tests suggest that MA can effectively improve the spatial learning and memory abilities of AD model mice. Rigorous experimental operations provided assurance of the reliability of the results.