As a part of ADME studies, rodent study plays an important role in learning the behavior of animals during the pharmaceutical researches or just with the aim to learn more about the animals themselves. A recent research oriented to explore if there is prosocial behaviors between the individual rat was done. And it showed that there is such kind of behaviors existing.Rats are notorious as breakers. They can eat anything that is edible for them, like cushion, couch, electronics, even human flesh. Thus they leave a bad impression on people. To find out weather rats have empathy to their kind is the aim of the research.
Two rats were put into different side of a box, there is a wall with a locked door between the two sides. And one side is drowned with water, which is very wet, and the other side is dry and with good ventilation. When the rat in water is at the edge of drowning, the rat in the other side probed to open the door and after several trials the door opened, then the drowning rat was saved
In addition, researchers exchanged the role of the two rats, and the result was surprising. It shows that the rat in the dry counterpart which had the experience of drowning opened the door at a much faster speed. But later experiments showed that the presentation of the rat in danger mattered, which would motivate the helper rat to learn to open the door more quickly.
Furthermore, researchers also studied the behaviors of rats when they were faced with the choices of helping the distressed rat or opening the other door for food. Surprisingly, they chose to save the rat in danger firstly and then open the door heading for food.
All the experiments carried out in the study show that rats do have compassion toward their distressed fellows, though they are always considered cruel breakers by people.