Behaviour, Mazes, Tracking
Code: 46573

Agora Maze - new sociability test (SocioBox method) Featured

A new device for Social Interaction

We have designed a new social interaction cage.

The main principle of this test is based on the free choice by a subject mouse to spend time in any part of an open circular arena (ἀγορά, the name is reminiscent of the central public space in ancient Greek city-states, literally meaning “gathering place”) attached to 5 cubicles with an animal inside each.

The Method (SocioBox) was originally described by D.Krueger-Burg et alia, in their paper “The SocioBox: a Novel Paradigm to Assess Complex Social Recognition in male Mice”. The original design, a large central square, and 5 cubicles positioned around its perimeter, enables confronting the subject (a wild--type male mouse) with 5 timulus mice, and subsequently see how readily the subject identifies an unfamiliar mouse among 5 newly acquainted animals.

The Agora Maze therefore allows diagnosis of social recognition deficits, prevalent in human psychiatric disorders such as autism and schizophrenia. The Agora was used at University of Aberdeen with the specific interest in smell related behaviours, with the purpose of understanding mechanisms of PD.  The Agora, the model we designed based on the SocioBox paper, was used at University of Aberdeen with the specific interest in smell related behaviours, with the purpose of understanding mechanisms of PD.  An early phenotype of PD is anosmia (loss of the sense of smell) may be translated to animals using a behavioural task that is dependent on smell as well as social interaction (see bibliography).

The Agora Maze 46573 consists of a 50x50cm grey base, on which 5 cubicles, and 5 blank walls are conveniently positioned to enclose a central square, having a cross diameter of 34 cm. The 5 cubicles are dimensioned 13x11.5cm, with 25cm height. Social interaction in rodents and especially mice is highly dependent on smell; detachable clear sliders, divide each cubicle from the central square; holes in the clear panels permit exchange of odors.

The Agora is optimized for videotracking, the ideal tool to automatize the test, allowing the experimenter to record the session without being present in the room. Additional parameters can be recorderd, such as time spent, as well as distance travelled by the mice in the area closer to the wall of the arena and in the centre

Additional Info



    The grey floor gives high contrast with both light and dark animals

    Ideal for Videotracking

    One central Arena, and 5 external boxes for stimulus mice

    Allows confronting the subject with 5 different stimulus animals

    Transparent, perforated dividers

    For social interaction and exchange of odors

    Magnetic attachment of the external boxes

    Designed for quick replacement of stimulus mice

    Can be disassembled in seconds

    Inter-trial cleaning is quick and easy








    Shipping Dimensions


    Shipping Weight



    24 months

    “A fundamental prerequisite for living in social communities is a highly complex set of social skills that governs interactions between individual members of a group. In consequence, impairments in these social skills, prominently prevalent in human psychiatric disorders such as autism and schizophrenia, have devastating consequences for individuals and society” (Meyer-Lindenberg and Tost, 2012; Lai et al., 2014; Green et al., 2015).

    Research has shown that, although human social behavior is generally more complex, humans and animals share some aspects of social behavior; developing new tools for the assessment of social skills in mouse models is essential to further advance in the understanding of these diseases.

    The experimental design of the new Agora Maze allows evaluation of preference for social novelty or the propensity to spend time with a previously un-encountered mouse rather than with a familiar mouse.


    Agora-Maze, Sociability Apparatus for Mice, complete

    Bibliography on 46573

    • S. Sanchez-Garcia & G. Riedel: “Agora: a Complex Social Recognition Paradigm” poster presented at Measuring Behavior 2018

    D. Krueger-Burg, Daniela Winkler et alia: “The SocioBox: a Novel paradigm to Assess Complex Social Recognition in Male Mice” Front. Behav. Neurosci., 11 August 2016 -

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