The marmoset as a model for investigating the neural basis of social cognition in health and disease

Ranshikha Samandra, Zakia Z. Haque, Marcello G.P. Rosa, Farshad Alizadeh Mansouri

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Social-cognitive processes facilitate the use of environmental cues to understand others, and to be understood by others. Animal models provide vital insights into the neural underpinning of social behaviours. To understand social cognition at even deeper behavioural, cognitive, neural, and molecular levels, we need to develop more representative study models, which allow testing of novel hypotheses using human-relevant cognitive tasks. Due to their cooperative breeding system and relatively small size, common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) offer a promising translational model for such endeavours. In addition to having social behavioural patterns and group dynamics analogous to those of humans, marmosets have cortical brain areas relevant for the mechanistic analysis of human social cognition, albeit in simplified form. Thus, they are likely suitable animal models for deciphering the physiological processes, connectivity and molecular mechanisms supporting advanced cognitive functions. Here, we review findings emerging from marmoset social and behavioural studies, which have already provided significant insights into executive, motivational, social, and emotional dysfunction associated with neurological and psychiatric disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104692
Number of pages19
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Volume138
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022

Keywords

  • Common marmosets
  • Inter-individual differences
  • Prefrontal cortex
  • Social behaviour
  • Social context
  • Social-cognitive abilities

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