Document Detail

Interpreting the effects of exercise on fear conditioning: the influence of time of day.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  21038936     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Process    
Previous studies indicate that physical exercise improves contextual fear memory, as evidenced by increased freezing behavior when rats are returned to a training environment that was initially paired with footshock. However, freezing behavior could also be affected by fatigue, especially because rats were tested shortly after the end of the dark cycle, which is when most wheel running was likely to occur. In addition, exercise has been shown to have anxiolytic effects, further confounding interpretation of the effects of exercise on cognition when using aversive conditioning tasks. These factors were examined in the present study by comparing freezing behavior in exercising and nonexercising rats that were tested at different times in the light cycle. In addition, all rats were tested on an elevated plus maze to assess anxiety-like behavior and in an open-field apparatus to measure locomotor activity in order to directly examine interactions between freezing, anxiety-like behavior, and locomotion. Consistent with prior studies, exercising rats exhibited more context freezing than did sedentary rats when tested early in the light cycle. However, the opposite pattern of results was obtained when testing occurred late in the light cycle, an effect driven by a difference in the amount of freezing exhibited by the sedentary control groups. Indeed, the levels of context freezing exhibited by exercising rats were comparable regardless of when the rats were tested during the light cycle. These data have implications for interpreting the effects of exercise on aversive conditioning.
Michael E Hopkins; David J Bucci
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Behavioral neuroscience     Volume:  124     ISSN:  1939-0084     ISO Abbreviation:  Behav. Neurosci.     Publication Date:  2010 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-12-07     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8302411     Medline TA:  Behav Neurosci     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  868-72     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
© 2010 APA, all rights reserved.
Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH 03755, USA.
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