The effects of pre-training or post-training subcutaneous injections of multiple doses of the non-competitive NMDA-receptor antagonist (+)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine maleate (MK-801) on cued and contextual fear conditioning were examined in F344 rats. Pre-training injections of MK-801 (0.3 and 1.0 mg/kg) disrupted contextual fear conditioning but not cued fear conditioning. Post-training injections of MK-801 did not disrupt cued or contextual fear conditioning. In fact, the 0.3 mg/kg dose of MK-801 enhanced cued fear conditioning. Finally, rats were tested for MK-801-induced alterations in sensitivity to pain using the formalin test for nociception. MK-801 did not reduce sensitivity to pain. These results suggest that NMDA receptors are involved in acquisition of contextual fear conditioning but not in memory consolidation of the learned response.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health