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Acquisition and extinction of facilitation in the C57BL/6J mouse

Authors
  • Fetsko, Leah Ann1
  • Stebbins, Hilary E.1
  • Gallagher, Kathleen Kelly1
  • Colwill, Ruth M.1
  • 1 Brown University, Department of Psychology, Providence, RI, 02912 , Providence
Type
Published Article
Journal
Learning & Behavior
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Nov 01, 2005
Volume
33
Issue
4
Pages
479–500
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3758/BF03193186
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

Acquisition, extinction, and transfer of facilitation were explored in a series of experiments with C57BL/6J mice. With a procedure in which an auditory target was followed by food only in the presence of a visual facilitator, Experiments 1—4 showed that the facilitator promoted magazine entries to the auditory target. This enhancement effect was eliminated by training the facilitator as a conditioned inhibitor (Experiments 1 and 3B). Enhancement was also reduced by nonreinforced presentations of the facilitator in a discrimination procedure (Experiment 1) and by simple nonreinforcement of the facilitator (Experiments 2, 3A, and 4). In contrast to the results obtained with a facilitator, simple nonreinforcement of an inhibitor, a visual cue that had signaled when an auditory target would not be reinforced, did not reduce its ability to modulate responding to that target (Experiment 4). However, both the facilitator and the inhibitor were found to transfer their modulatory effects to other targets (Experiment 4). Finally, mice demonstrated no evidence of differential responding on a biconditional discrimination procedure in which one auditory target (A1) was reinforced in the presence of one visual stimulus (L1) but not in the presence of another (L2), and a different auditory target (A2) was reinforced in L2 but not in L1 (Experiment 5). The implications of these results for analysis of the function of a facilitator are discussed.

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