A new behavioural paradigm has been devised to study spatial navigation in rodents. The honeycomb maze aims to overcome disadvantages of currently available tasks and consists of 37 hexagonal platforms that can be independently raised or lowered to generate different routes. To navigate across the maze, rats had to learn to choose the platform that was positioned with the smallest angle away from the goal direction. Control rats learned this quickly, but damage to the hippocampus compromised performance. The honeycomb maze can therefore control the choices offered to the animal at each point and assesses knowledge of goal direction.
Wood, R. A. et al. The honeycomb maze provides a novel test to study hippocampal-dependent spatial navigation. Nature 554, 102–105 (2018)
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Lewis, S. Directional dilemmas. Nat Rev Neurosci 19, 184 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1038/nrn.2018.25