Octodon degus (Molina 1782): A model in comparative biology and biomedicine

Alvaro O. Ardiles, John Ewer, Monica L. Acosta, Alfredo Kirkwood, Agustin Martinez, Luis Ebensperger, Francisco Bozinovic, Theresa M. Lee, Adrian G. Palacios

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


One major goal of integrative and comparative biology is to understand and explain the interaction between the performance and behavior of animals in their natural environment. The Caviomorph, Octodon degu, is a native rodent species from Chile, and represents a unique model to study physiological and behavioral traits, including cognitive and sensory abilities. Degus live in colonies and have a well-structured social organization, with a mostly diurnal-crepuscular circadian activity pattern. More notable is the fact that in captivity, they reproduce and live between 5 and 7 yr and show hallmarks of neurodegenerative diseases (including Alzheimer's disease), diabetes, and cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)312-318
Number of pages7
JournalCold Spring Harbor Protocols
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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