Social interaction and social withdrawal in rodents as readouts for investigating the negative symptoms of schizophrenia

Christina A. Wilson, James I. Koenig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Scopus citations


Negative symptoms (e.g., asociality and anhedonia) are a distinct symptomatic domain that has been found to significantly affect the quality of life in patients diagnosed with schizophrenia. Additionally, the primary negative symptom of asociality (i.e., withdrawal from social contact that derives from indifference or lack of desire to have social contact) is a major contributor to poor psychosocial functioning and has been found to play an important role in the course of the disorder. Nonetheless, the pathophysiology underlying these symptoms is unknown and currently available treatment options (e.g., antipsychotics and cognitive-behavioral therapy) fail to reliably produce efficacious benefits. Utilizing rodent paradigms that measure social behaviors (e.g., social withdrawal) to elucidate the neurobiological substrates that underlie social dysfunction and to identify novel therapeutic targets may be highly informative and useful to understand more about the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. Accordingly, the purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the behavioral tasks for assessing social functioning that may be translationally relevant for investigating negative symptoms associated with schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)759-773
Number of pages15
JournalEuropean Neuropsychopharmacology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Negative symptoms
  • Rodent model
  • Schizophrenia
  • Social interaction
  • Social withdrawal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Social interaction and social withdrawal in rodents as readouts for investigating the negative symptoms of schizophrenia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this