Open-Field Behavior in Mice: Evidence for a Major Gene Effect Mediated by the Visual System

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  23 Dec 1966:
Vol. 154, Issue 3756, pp. 1577-1579
DOI: 10.1126/science.154.3756.1577


In segregating F2, F3, and F4 generations, albino mice had lower activity and higher defecation scores than pigmented animals when tested in a brightly lighted open field. These differences persisted when members of an F5 generation were tested under white light, but largely disappeared under red light. Thus it was concluded that there is a major gene effect on the quantitative traits of open-field activity and defecation which is mediated by the visual system and that albino mice are more photophobic than pigmented mice under conditions of bright illumination.