Document Detail

Neonatal alcohol exposure impairs contextual fear conditioning in juvenile rats by disrupting cholinergic function.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23578760     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The context preexposure facilitation effect (CPFE) is a variant of context fear conditioning in which context preexposure facilitates conditioning to immediate foot shock. Learning about context (preexposure), associating the context with shock (training), and expression of context fear (testing) occur in successive phases of the protocol. The CPFE develops postnatally, depends on hippocampal NMDA receptor function, and is highly sensitive to neonatal alcohol exposure during the weanling/juvenile period of development [15,16]. The present study examined some behavioral and pharmacological mechanisms through which neonatal alcohol impairs the CPFE in juvenile rats. We found that a 5-min context preexposure plus five 1-min preexposures greatly increases the levels of conditioned freezing compared to a single 5-min exposure or to five 1-min preexposures (Experiment 1). Increasing conditioned freezing with the multiple- exposure CPFE protocol does not alter the neonatal alcohol-induced deficit in the CPFE (Experiment 2). Finally, systemic administration of 0.01 mg/kg physostigmine prior to all three phases of the CPFE reverses this ethanol-induced deficit. These findings show that impairment of the CPFE by neonatal alcohol is not confined to behavioral protocols that produce low levels of conditioned freezing. They also support recent evidence that this impairment reflects a disruption of cholinergic function [18].
Lisa B Dokovna; Sarah A Jablonski; Mark E Stanton
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2013-04-08
Journal Detail:
Title:  Behavioural brain research     Volume:  248     ISSN:  1872-7549     ISO Abbreviation:  Behav. Brain Res.     Publication Date:  2013 Jul 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-06-03     Completed Date:  2014-02-10     Revised Date:  2014-07-01    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8004872     Medline TA:  Behav Brain Res     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  114-20     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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MeSH Terms
Alcohols / adverse effects*
Animals, Newborn
Conditioning (Psychology) / drug effects*
Fear / drug effects*
Freezing Reaction, Cataleptic / drug effects*
Hippocampus / drug effects*
Rats, Long-Evans
Receptors, Cholinergic / drug effects*
Grant Support
1-R21-HD070662-01/HD/NICHD NIH HHS; 2-R01-AA9838-14/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS; F31 AA021317/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS; R21 HD070662/HD/NICHD NIH HHS
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Alcohols; 0/Receptors, Cholinergic

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