The mission of the Behavior Core is to provide a comprehensive approach to the research needs of COBRE investigators, 365速发国际 researchers, and the external research community using the highest level of expertise, training, and instrumentation. The core provides in-house validation of cutting-edge models of pain and relevant co-morbidities to advance the pain field and early-stage drug discovery. 

Behavior Services

  • General Behavioral Phenotyping: Observational Screens, Motor Function
  • Pain/Sensory Testing: Thermal, Mechanical, Chemical
  • Additional Neurobehavioral Tests: Psychiatric, Addiction, Learning, and Memory
  • Miscellaneous Systems: GI Transit, Cardiovascular, and Respiration

Other Services

  • Assistance choosing behavioral test and statistical tests for assessing results
  • Staff expertise includes surgical methods for producing pain models; dosing of drugs/anesthetics including central, systemic, and localized administration; and tissue extractions
  • Training is offered for faculty, staff, and students in surgical techniques for small animal surgeries
  • Download a complete list of services (PDF)
  • Submit a work request

For more information or cost estimates please email the Behavior Core professional staff.

The Behavior Core is fully integrated with the 365速发国际's Histology and Imaging Core. The cores work together to optimize protocols for sample collection which will produce the best quality images.


We are located in Stella Maris Hall. 

Animal Colony Management


The Behavioral Core works with many transgenic mouse lines. The core has a space on the fourth floor of Stella Maris Hall dedicated for genotyping in house animals. This lab is equipped with supplies needed for PCR and gel imaging. This space is available for use for in house genotyping. Please email the Behavior Core to use this space and equipment.

Mouse Colony Management

Mouse Colony Management is an important aspect of genetic research. To be compliant with OLAW guidelines, the principle investigator must generate the fewest number of animals to complete the experiment. The goal of this service is to provide assistance in designing breeding strategies to meet this criteria.

For more information, or to reserve the genotyping equipment, please email the Behavior Core professional staff.


Animal Care

For more information contact Jamie Vaughn.


The 365速发国际 Badging program is a non-credit bearing vehicle that digitally validates and documents knowledge, skill sets, qualifications, and competencies. Open to all learners, any participant who completes the learning activities and demonstrates achievement of the learning outcomes/competencies for a badge would be able to claim it. Sharing badges with graduate schools, potential employers, etc., is a great way to demonstrate some of the skills and competencies you have acquired that are not captured in an academic transcript.

For interested students, the core is now part of the 365速发国际 Badging program. Students will gain a knowledge-base and skillsets relevant to the core specialty.

Funding Opportunities


Beckley JT, Pajouhesh H, Luu G, Klas S, Delwig A, Monteleone D, Zhou X, Giuvelis D, Meng ID, Yeomans DC, Hunter JC, Mulcahy JV. Antinociceptive properties of an isoform-selective inhibitor of Nav1.7 derived from saxitoxin in mouse models of pain. Pain. 2021 Apr 1;162(4):1250-1261. 

Nguyen LD, Nolte LG, Tan WJT, Giuvelis D, Santos-Sacchi J, Bilsky E, Ehrlich BE. Comprehensive somatosensory and neurological phenotyping of NCS1 knockout mice. Sci Rep. 2021 Jan 27;11(1):2372.

Huynh PN, Giuvelis D, Christensen S, Tucker KL, McIntosh JM. RgIA4 Accelerates Recovery from Paclitaxel-Induced Neuropathic Pain in Rats. Mar Drugs. 2019 Dec 21;18(1). doi: 10.3390/md18010012. PubMed PMID: 31877728; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7024385.

Cone K, Lanpher J, Kinens A, Richard P, Couture S, Brackin R, Payne E, Harrington K, Rice KC, Stevenson GW. Delta/mu opioid receptor interactions in operant conditioning assays of pain-depressed responding and drug-induced rate suppression: assessment of therapeutic index in male Sprague Dawley rats. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2018 May;235(5):1609-1618.

Havelin J, Imbert I, Cormier J, Allen J, Porreca F, King T. Central Sensitization and Neuropathic Features of Ongoing Pain in a Rat Model of Advanced Osteoarthritis. J Pain. 2016 Mar;17(3):374-82.

Zhang Y, Williams DA, Zaidi SA, Yuan Y, Braithwaite A, Bilsky EJ, Dewey WL, Akbarali HI, Streicher JM, Selley DE. 17-Cyclopropylmethyl-3,14β-dihydroxy-4,5α-epoxy-6β-(4'-pyridylcarboxamido) morphinan (NAP) Modulating the Mu Opioid Receptor in a Biased Fashion. ACS Chem Neurosci. 2016 Mar 16;7(3):297-304.

Warner E, Krivitsky R, Cone K, Atherton P, Pitre T, Lanpher J, Giuvelis G, Bergquist I, King T, Bilsky E, and Stevenson G. Evaluation of a Postoperative Pain-Like State n Motivated Behavior in Rats: Effects of Plantar Incision on Progressive-Ratio Food-Maintained Responding. Drug Dev Research. Dec 2015; 76(8):432–441.

Burman M, Bilsky E. FAAH inhibitor OL-135 disrupts contextual, but not auditory, fear conditioning in rats. Behav Brain Res. 2016 Jul 15;308:1-5.

Meng ID, Barton ST, Mecum NE, Kurose M. Corneal sensitivity following lacrimal gland excision in the rat. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2015 May;56(5):3347-54.

Lefever M, Li Y, Anglin B, Muthu D, Giuvelis D, Lowery JJ, Knapp BI, Bidlack JM, Bilsky EJ, Polt R. Structural Requirements for CNS Active Opioid Glycopeptides. J Med Chem. 2015 Aug 13;58(15):5728-41.

Motyl KJ, DeMambro VE, Barlow D, Olshan D, Nagano K, Baron R, Rosen CJ, Houseknecht KL. Propranolol Attenuates Risperidone-Induced Trabecular Bone Loss in Female Mice. Endocrinology. 2015 Jul;156(7):2374-83.

Podolsky AT, Sandweiss A, Hu J, Bilsky EJ, Cain JP, Kumirov VK, Lee YS, Hruby VJ, Vardanyan RS, Vanderah TW. Novel fentanyl-based dual μ/δ-opioid agonists for the treatment of acute and chronic pain. Life Sci. 2013 Dec 18;93(25-26):1010-6.

Burman MA, Simmons CA, Hughes M, Lei L. Developing and validating trace fear conditioning protocols in C57BL/6 mice. J Neurosci Methods. 2014 Jan 30;222:111-7. 

Li Y, St Louis L, Knapp BI, Muthu D, Anglin B, Giuvelis D, Bidlack JM, Bilsky EJ, Polt R. Can amphipathic helices influence the CNS antinociceptive activity of glycopeptides related to β-endorphin? J Med Chem. 2014 Mar 27;57(6):2237-46.

Mclane V, Cao L, Willis C. Morphine increases hippocampal viral load and suppresses frontal lobe CCL5 expression in the LP-BM5 AIDS model. J Neuroimmunol. 2014 Apr 15;269(1-2):44-51.

Burman M, Erickson K, Deal A, Jacobson R. Contextual and Auditory Fear Conditioning Continue to Emerge during the Periweaning Period in Rats. Eur J Pharmacol. 2014 Aug 5;736:124-30.

Bolded names are core staff.

Remember to acknowledge the COBRE Behavioral Core and the financial support provided by NIGMS grant number P30GM145497 in manuscripts, grants, and presentations that include our work.


Tamara King, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences
Director, Behavior Core

Kerry L. Tucker, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Sciences