I was born in the twin island republic of Trinidad & Tobago. I moved to the USA in 2001 and obtained my bachelors degree in Psychology from Florida International University in 2005. I entered graduate school in 2006 and received both my masters and Ph.D degrees in Developmental Psychobiology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2008 and 2011, respectively. I am currently a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Bern, Switzerland.

I am interested in the investigation of naturally occurring variations in the development of species-typical behaviour in humans and other animals, and their underlying physiological and neuro-anatomical correlates. From a more applied perspective, I am interested in early life perturbations and assessment of their long term effects as well as the welfare implications of non-human animal used by humans. Other interests include the history of psychology, the use of animal models in comparative psychology and evaluation of their effectiveness, and ethology.

In my current position, I am working on a project which examines the hypothesis that both impaired welfare and poor reproducibility of experimental results are caused by a failure to account for the nature and limitations of phenotypic plasticity. In particular, we are investigating the effects of environmental conditions on brain function and emotional state, and on variation in experimental outcomes.

Current research

  • Examination of the relation between husbandry procedures to animal welfare and experimental outcomes with particular emphasis on refinement. More Info

Recent publications

Varholick, J. A., Bailoo, J.D., Palme, R. and Würbel, H. (2018). Phenotypic variability between social dominance ranks in laboratory mice. Scientific Reports, 8(6593). DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-24624-4

Hintze, S., Melotti, L., Colosio, S., Bailoo, J.D. Boada-Saña, M., Würbel, H., Murphy, E. (2018). A cross-species judgement bias task: integrating active trial initiation into a spatial go/no-go task. Scientific Reports, 8(5104). DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-23459-3

Bailoo, J.D., Murphy, E., Varholick, J.A., Novak, J., Palme, R., Würbel, H. (2018). Evaluation of the effects of space allowance on measures of animal welfare in laboratory mice. Scientific Reports, 8(173). 10.1038/s41598-017-18493-6 

Bailoo, J. D., Varholick, J. A., Garza, X. J., Jordan, R. L., & Hintze, S. (2016). Maternal separation followed by isolation-housing differentially affects prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response in C57BL/6 mice. Developmental Psychobiology, 58(8), 937-944. DOI: 10.1002/dev.21422

Novak, J., Bailoo, J. D., Melotti, L., & Würbel, H. (2016). Effect of cage-induced stereotypies on measures of affective state and recurrent perseveration in CD-1 and C57BL/6 mice. PLoS ONE, 11(5), e0153203. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0153203

Novak, J., Bailoo, J. D., Melotti, L., Rommen, J., & Würbel, H. (2015).  An exploration based cognitive bias test for mice: effects of handling method and  stereotypic behavior. PLoS ONE, 10(7), e10130718. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0130718

Bailoo, J. D., Reichlin, T. S., & Würbel, H. (2014). Refinement of experimental design and conduct in Laboratory Animal Research. Institute for Laboratory Animal Research, 55(3), 383-391. DOI: 10.1093/ilar/ilu037

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