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Our PhD Studentship awards are open for outline applications! Awards of three/four years are available including joint awards with the BHF.

NC3Rs | 20 Years: Pioneering Better Science
CRACK IT Challenge

Moshers: Mouse Smart Hoppers

White mice eating seeds

At a glance

Award date
January 2019 - March 2021
Contract amount


  • Refinement



Measuring food intake in laboratory rodents can provide a vital indicator of general welfare, recovery from surgery, and is an important experimental parameter for metabolic studies. Currently, measurement of food intake requires either the mice to be removed from their cage for weighing or for them to be singly-housed in bespoke cages for the duration of the study. The ability to continuously monitor changes in food consumption and intervene before weight loss occurs will provide welfare benefits to thousands of mice used in research by allowing earlier intervention before significant suffering. Detailed feeding data will also increase the knowledge obtained from mouse models used in the study of obesity and metabolic diseases such as diabetes.To address this Challenge, the team for Research Devices Ltd aim to developed technology to monitor the food intake of socially housed mice. The technology identifies individual mice, quantifies individual food intake, and will integrate into all types of racks and cages without the requirement for modifications.

Full details about this CRACK IT Challenge can be found on the CRACK IT website.