The efficacy of two different unconditioned stimuli (US) in producing conditioned taste aversion (CTA) was tested in rats after bilateral ibotenic acid (IBO) lesions of the gustatory nucleus of thalamus (TTAx) and the medial and lateral parabrachial nuclei (mPBNx, lPBNx). An initial study determined an equivalent dose for the two USs, LiCl and cyclophosphamide (CY), using non-lesioned rats. Subsequently, using a separate set of lesioned animals and their sham controls (SHAM), injections of CY were paired 3 times with one of two taste stimuli (CSs), 0.1 M NaCl for half the rats in each group, 0.2 M sucrose for the other half. After these conditioning trials, the CS was presented twice more without the US, first in a 1-bottle test, then in a 2-bottle choice with water. The acquisition and test trials had 2 intervening water-only days to assure complete rehydration. Two weeks later, the same rats were tested again for acquisition of a CTA using LiCl as the US and the opposite CS as that used during the CY trials. The SHAM and TTAx groups learned to avoid consuming the taste associated with either CY or LiCl treatment. The two PBNx groups failed to learn an aversion regardless of the US.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Behavioral Neuroscience