Genetic contributions to generalized arousal of brain and behavior

J. Garey, A. Goodwillie, J. Frohlich, M. Morgan, J. A. Gustafsson, O. Smithies, K. S. Korach, S. Ogawa, D. W. Pfaff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


We have identified a generalized arousal component in the behavior of mice. Analyzed by mathematical/statistical approaches across experiments, investigators, and mouse populations, it accounts for about 1/3 of the variance in arousal-related measures. Knockout of the gene coding for the classical estrogen receptor (ER-α), a ligand-activated transcription factor, greatly reduced arousal responses. In contrast, disrupting the gene for a likely gene duplication product, ER-β, did not have these effects. A combination of mathematical and genetic approaches to arousal in an experimentally tractable mammal opens up analysis of a CNS function of considerable theoretical and practical significance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11019-11022
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number19
StatePublished - Sep 16 2003


  • Estrogen
  • Estrogen receptor
  • Genomics
  • Mice
  • Motivation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • General


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