Impaired Performance on a Rhesus Monkey Neuropsychological Testing Battery following Simian Immunodeficiency Virus Infection

Michael R. Weed, Lisa H. Gold, Ilham Polis, George F. Koob, Howard S. Fox, Michael A. Taffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

45 Scopus citations


Infection with simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) in macaques provides an excellent model of AIDS including HIV-induced central nervous system (CNS) pathology and cognitive/behavioral impairment. Recently a behavioral test battery has been developed for macaques based on the CANTAB human neuropsychological testing battery. As with human neuropsychological batteries, different tasks are thought to involve different neural substrates, and therefore performance profiles may assess function in particular brain regions. Ten rhesus monkeys were infected with SIV after being trained on two or more of the battery tasks addressing memory (delayed nonmatching to sample, DNMS), spatial working memory (using a self-ordered spatial search task, SOSS), motivation (progressive-ratio, PR), reaction time (RT), and/or fine motor skills (bimanual motor skill, BMS). Performance was compared to that of 9 uninfected monkeys. Overall, some aspect of performance was impaired in all 10 monkeys following infection. Consistent with results in human AIDS patients, individual performance was impaired most often on battery tasks thought to be sensitive to frontostriatal dopaminergic functioning such as SOSS, RT, and BMS. These results further demonstrate the similarity of behavioral impairment produced by SIV and HIV on homologous behavioral tests, and establish the utility of the testing battery for further investigations into the CNS mechanisms of the reported behavioral changes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)77-89
Number of pages13
JournalAIDS Research and Human Retroviruses
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

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