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Amygdala inactivation impairs eyeblink conditioning in developing rats.

Authors
  • Ng, Ka H
  • Freeman, John H
Type
Published Article
Journal
Developmental Psychobiology
Publisher
Wiley (John Wiley & Sons)
Publication Date
Jul 01, 2014
Volume
56
Issue
5
Pages
999–1007
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/dev.21180
PMID: 24273052
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

The amygdala facilitates acquisition of eyeblink conditioning in adult animals by enhancing conditioned stimulus (CS) inputs to the cerebellum and the unconditioned response circuitry. Ontogenetic changes in amygdala modulation of eyeblink conditioning have not been investigated directly. We examined the effects of amygdala inactivation on the ontogeny of eyeblink conditioning and conditioned freezing in rat pups. Rat pups received bilateral infusions of saline or bupivacaine into the central nucleus of the amygdala before each of the first five training sessions, which consisted of paired CS-US trials on postnatal days (P) 17-19, P21-23, or P24-26. The final session consisted of CS-alone test trials to assess the effect of amygdala inactivation during training on conditioned freezing. Amygdala inactivation impaired acquisition of eyeblink conditioning in all of the age groups and impaired freezing to the context during the extinction test. The results indicate that the amygdala modulates cerebellar learning as soon as it begins to emerge ontogenetically.

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