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Glucocorticoid receptor agonist enhances pavlovian appetitive conditioning but disrupts outcome-specific associations



Glucocorticoid receptor agonist enhances pavlovian appetitive conditioning but disrupts outcome-specific associations



Behavioral Neuroscience 117(6): 1453-1457



A Pavlovian-instrumental transfer design was used to investigate the impact of the glucocorticoid receptor agonist dexamethasone (dex) on Pavlovian associations involving the sensory and motivational aspects of rewards. Rats were trained with 2 lever responses, R1 and R2, for different rewards, Outcome (O)1 and O2. In separate Pavlovian training sessions. Stimulus A was paired with O1 and Stimulus B with O2. Administration of dex after A-O1 sessions enhanced A-O1 associations measured in extinction, relative to B-O2 pairings that were followed by saline. In lever-press transfer tests, presentation of Stimuli A or B enhanced general responding to the same degree. However, outcome-specific transfer (selectively greater enhancement of R1 during A and R2 during B) was abolished for Stimulus A. This suggests that memory enhancement by posttraining dex is simultaneously detrimental to processing of outcome-specific sensory information.

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Accession: 009862001

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 14674864

DOI: 10.1037/0735-7044.117.6.1453


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