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The Effects OF NMDA Antagonists On Latent Inhibition via Chronic Administration of MK-801

Adams, Amanda S. and Willner, Jeffrey and Jackson, Pamela and Pierce, Thomas W. (2013) The Effects OF NMDA Antagonists On Latent Inhibition via Chronic Administration of MK-801. Masters thesis, Radford University.

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Evidence shows the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor for the neurotransmitter glutamate plays an important role in regulating learning and behavior. These receptors are critically involved in the establishment of long-term potentiation (LTP). LTP is a widely studied cellular mechanism of learning and memory that has been observed in the Hippocampus and other areas of the brain. Researchers have investigated the role of LTP and NMDA receptors in many behavioral learning and memory tasks. One study showed the NMDA antagonist MK-801 ((+)-5-methyl-10, 11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclo- hepten-5,10-iminemaleate) produced deficits in place learning and spatial strategies in the Morris water maze (Robinson, Crooks, Shinkman, & Gallagher, 1989). Another hippocampal-dependent task that is commonly studied is called latent inhibition. There are many discrepancies in past literature regarding the nature of MK-801’s effects on latent inhibition. The purpose of this study was to examine how the NMDA antagonist MK-801 affects a within-subjects, appetitive latent inhibition task. Long-Evans rats received subcutaneous injections of either a low (0.05 mg/kg) or high (0.1 mg/kg) dose of MK-801, or saline. The subjects received 1 day of magazine training, 4 days of non-reinforced exposure to either a clicker or a white noise, and 4 days of conditioning in which the preexposed stimulus and a novel stimulus were paired with the delivery of a food pellet. Conditioning days were recorded and scored for 6 different behaviors occurring just before and during each conditioned stimulus (CS) presentation. Results indicated that rats displayed significantly more conditioning behavior to the clicker CS than the white noise CS independent of which stimulus was preexposed. Evidence suggested the clicker could possibly have unconditioned aversive properties. Nevertheless, rats showed more rapid acquisition to the novel clicker when preexposed to the white noise, which signified a latent inhibition effect. MK-801 neither disrupted nor enhanced the latent inhibition effect; therefore, NMDA receptors were not critical for latent inhibition.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Depositing User: Amanda Adams
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2014 13:57
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2018 14:47

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