Zantiks MWP

The MWP units are small, highly capable systems for tracking and providing stimuli for small organisms in multi well plates, petri dishes or custom chambers.



All the Zantiks units are built along the same principles, enabling high throughput and easy-to-run experiments. The benefits of choosing Zantiks include:

  • An isolated and stable testing environment
  • Networked and controlled via a web browser
  • Live video view and real-time video recording
  • Includes software, uses the Zanscript language for experiment specification
  • Real-time results processing and output in .csv format
  • Integrated camera, computer, experimental chamber and built-in stimuli
  • Takes up little bench space
  • Only requires 12V power and a network connection

Target Studies

The MWP systems can perform a range of studies, including but not exclusive to:

  • Locomotor activity
  • Toxicity
  • Startle response
  • Habituation
  • Prepulse inhibition
  • Circadian rhythm

NOTE: this is not a complete list of all the studies that the systems are capable of. Please contact us if you have any specific studies in mind.


Zantiks MWP kit

The MWP system has an overall unit size of 190mm width x 230mm length x 480mm height and is fully integrated with:

  • Zantiks proprietary software
  • Computer
  • Camera
  • Overhead lights
  • Audio/sound output
  • Temperature monitoring
  • A vibration plate
  • A light stand
  • Standard temperature control
Mwp Z2 S 65Percent
Zantiks MWP unit with standard temperature control, LED light and testing chamber which fits a standard multi-well plate or petri dish

Built-in stimuli

  • Overhead illumination – colour, brightness and duration can be specified with millisecond accuracy.
    • Can be used for ambient lighting, circadian rhythm entrainment and light flashes.
  • Vibratory stimulus – duration, intensity and frequency can be precisely controlled with millisecond accuracy.
    • Suitable for generating startle responses and for PPI.
  • Audio stimuli - allows playback of *.wav files through a range of speaker options.
    • Suitable for startles, predator cues, vocal calls of conspecifics, etc.

Included equipment

Light stand

Uses LED lighting to provide a bright light stimulus. Suitable for optogenetics, startle responses and PPI. Available in a range of wavelengths including white, blue (470nm) and green (530nm). Other wavelengths are available, contact us to discuss your requirements.

  • Plugs directly into the MWP units - no additional power supply needed.
  • Control both the brightness (Lux), frequency and duration of the stimulus through Zanscript with millisecond accuracy.

Note: we have confirmed the plate can stimulate zebrafish larvae, and adult Drosophila, but we recommend full evaluation of stimulation performance in different wells.

20200226 095603
Light stand placed inside the testing chamber of the MWP (shown without the foam insulating door for visibility).
20200226 103022
View of the light stand from the side with light on.

Standard temperature control unit

Allows raising the temperature above that of ambient room temperature. Suitable for maintaining favourable temperatures, or for heat shock.

  • Connects to side of the MWP units.
  • Control of the temperature up to 10°C above ambient.
  • Operates via moving air through the testing chamber.
Standard Tcheater
The standard temperature control unit is shown. The fan system attaches directly onto the side of the MWP unit.

Add-on equipment

Peltier temperature control unit

  • A separate unit that easily connects to both the MWP units.
  • Control of the temperature from 6°C below to 12°C above ambient.
  • Operates via circulating the air in the testing chamber.
  • Allows for a greater range of control of air temperature compared to the standard temperature control system.
Temp Control
Adjusting the temperature in the MWP unit above and below ambient room temperature

FTIR stand for Drosophila larvae

The frustrated total internal reflection (FTIR) stand allows for tracking of Drosophila larvae and can be used in replacement of the light stand in the MWP system.


Temperature control options for the MWP

The Zantiks MWP units provide an enclosed and isolated environment for behavioural research. However, one of the consequences of the enclosed environment, and the stimuli used, is that the temperature within can rise above ambient.

To combat this, Zantiks have two options for enabling temperature control within its MWP units. Both systems attach to the side of the unit, and move air through the chamber in which the animals are placed. Both systems are powered entirely from the MWP unit, and both can be controlled from the Zanscript experimental scripting language.

As both systems operate by moving air through the unit, it may be beneficial for some experiments (such as long-term or animals that require humidity) to use lids or covers on the multi-well plates / petri dishes to reduce evaporation from the chambers containing animals.

Both Tc From Above
Aerial view of both temperature control systems. The MWP on the left has the peltier system and the unit on the right has the standard system. Note that about 9 x the area is required for the peltier system

Standard Temperature Control System (included with purchase of the MWP unit)

This system has a relatively small footprint (total bench area required, 30cm x 30cm). The standard temperature control moves ambient air through the unit slowly. If/when required, the air can be heated to achieve a temperature above that of the ambient lab temperature by up to 10°C.

This system allows one to achieve standard conditions that are normally required for experiments. For example:

  • Drosophila experiments, in a room at 20°C, you can achieve the standard 22°C or 25°C
  • Zebrafish embryos and larvae experiments, in a room at 25°C, you could achieve the standard 28°C.

Peltier Temperature Control System

This system has a much larger footprint (total bench area required, 90cm x 90cm). However, it does allow for a greater range of air temperature control away from the ambient. It will enable control of 6°C below the ambient laboratory temperature and 12°C above (with scope for up to 8°C below and 15°C ambient laboratory temperature).


How to operate

Fully networked, Zantiks units are supplied with a router and controlled via a web browser, allowing users to operate them from a phone, tablet, laptop, PC, Mac or Chromebook.

From the web browser on your device you can edit scripts, start and stop chosen services, view live video, download results (.csv files) via the Zantiks Control Console.

For details on how to use the Zantiks Control Console, see the Zantiks Control Console manual.


Tracking and video recording

Live tracking of up to 96 single-housed small animals can be carried out in the MWP up to 30fps. Video recordings may be made simultaneously. The cameras can produce high-speed video at 600fps.

Tracking larval zebrafish in a 24-well plate in the Zantiks MWP

Tracking adult Drosophila in the Zantiks MWP