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A dissociation between renewal and contextual fear conditioning in juvenile rats.

Authors
  • Park, Chun Hui J1, 2
  • Ganella, Despina E1, 2
  • Kim, Jee Hyun1, 2
  • 1 Behavioural Neuroscience Division, The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, Parkville, Victoria, Australia. , (Australia)
  • 2 Florey Department of Neuroscience and Mental Health, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia. , (Australia)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Developmental Psychobiology
Publisher
Wiley (John Wiley & Sons)
Publication Date
May 01, 2017
Volume
59
Issue
4
Pages
515–522
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/dev.21516
PMID: 28383773
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

We investigated whether juvenile rats do not express renewal following extinction of conditioned fear due to their inability to form a long-term contextual fear memory. In experiment 1, postnatal day (P) 18 and 25 rats received 3 white-noise and footshock pairings, followed by 60 white-noise alone presentations the next day. When tested in a different context to extinction, P25 rats displayed renewal whereas P18 rats did not. Experiments 2A and 2B surprisingly showed that P18 and P25 rats do not show differences in contextual and cued fear, regardless of the conditioning-test intervals and the number of white-noise-footshock pairings received. Finally, we observed age differences in contextual fear when P25 rats were weaned at P21 in experiment 3. These results indicate that the developmental dissociation observed in renewal of extinguished fear is not related to the widely believed late emergence of contextual fear learning.

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