Neuroscience

Why rats prefer company of the young and stressed

Researchers have identified a neural pathway implicated in social interaction between adult and juvenile animals, according to new research in rats published in JNeurosci.

Neuroscience

Key to learning and forgetting identified in sleeping brain

Distinct patterns of electrical activity in the sleeping brain may influence whether we remember or forget what we learned the previous day, according to a new study by UC San Francisco researchers. The scientists were able ...

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Rat

50 species

Stenomys Thomas, 1910

Rats are various medium-sized, long-tailed rodents of the superfamily Muroidea. "True rats" are members of the genus Rattus, the most important of which to humans are the black rat, Rattus rattus, and the brown rat, Rattus norvegicus. Many members of other rodent genera and families are also called rats and share many characteristics with true rats.

Rats are typically distinguished from mice by their size; rats are generally large muroid rodents, while mice are generally small muroid rodents. The muroid family is very large and complex, and the common terms rat and mouse are not taxonomically specific. Generally, when someone discovers a large muroid, its common name includes the term rat, while if it is small, the name includes the term mouse - scientifically, the terms are not confined to members of the Rattus and Mus genera. Compare the taxonomic classification of the Pack rat and Cotton mouse.

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