Piglets offer a peek at early brain development

[Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons

Stress during early life can affect human cognitive development, but characterizing these effects is challenging, in part because of a lack of appropriate research subjects. A suitable model would be one whose brain development is similar to that of humans and whose cognitive abilities can be evaluated objectively. Rodney Johnson and his colleagues at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign recently developed a model that meets these requirements—the neonatal piglet.

Lab Anim. (NY) 41, 244 (2012).
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