Different disruptive effects on the acquisition and expression of conditioned taste aversion by blockades of amygdalar ionotropic and metabotropic glutamatergic receptor subtypes in rats.
ABSTRACT Conditioned taste aversion (CTA) is based on the gustatory long-term memory established after association of the taste of food (conditioned stimulus, CS) with visceral signals of poisoning (unconditioned stimulus, US). After the acquisition of CTA, hedonics of the taste CS changes from positive to negative as indicated by reduced ingestive and increased aversive taste reactivities in response to re-exposures to the CS. We examined the effects of reversible and selective blockades of the amygdalar glutamate receptor subtypes, AMPA, NMDA and metabotropic glutamate receptors, on the formation of CTA. Blockades of each of the three receptor subtypes between ingestion of saccharin (CS) and malaise-inducing LiCl (US) disrupted the acquisition of CTA. After the acquisition of CTA, however, blockades of only AMPA receptors, but not NMDA or metabotropic receptors, impaired the expression of CTA. This effect was seen only during the period when the antagonistic action to AMPA receptors lasted. These results indicate that both ionotropic and metabotropic glutamate receptor subtypes in the amygdala are indispensable for the acquisition of CTA, but that the expression of acquired CTA is mediated only by AMPA receptors. The present results also suggest that the amygdalar glutamatergic neural transmission is involved in the formation and storage of long-term gustatory memory associated with the altered hedonics from positive to negative.
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ABSTRACT: Conditioned taste aversion (CTA) can be applied to study associative learning and its relevant underpinning molecular mechanisms in discrete brain regions. The present study examined, by immunohistochemistry and immunocytochemistry, the effects of acquisition and expression of lithium-induced CTA on activated Extracellular signal Regulated Kinase (p-ERK) in the prefrontal cortex (PFCx) and nucleus accumbens (Acb) of male Sprague-Dawley rats. The study also examined, by immunoblotting, whether acquisition and expression of lithium-induced CTA resulted in modified levels of phosphorylation of glutamate receptor subunits (NR1 and GluR1) and Thr(34)- and Thr(75-Dopamine-and-cAMP-Regulated) PhosphoProtein (DARPP-32). CTA acquisition was associated with an increase of p-ERK-positive neurons and phosphorylated NR1 receptor subunit (p-NR1) in the PFCx, whereas p-GluR1, p-Thr(34)- and p-Thr(75)-DARPP-32 levels were not changed in this brain region. CTA expression increased the number of p-ERK-positive neurons in the shell (AcbSh) and core (AcbC) but left unmodified p-NR1, p-GluR1, p-Thr(34)- and p-Thr(75-DARPP-32) levels. Furthermore, post-embedding immunogold quantitative analysis in AcbSh revealed that CTA expression significantly increased nuclear p-ERK immunostaining as well as p-ERK-labeled axo-spinous contacts. Overall, these results indicate that ERK and NR1, but not GluR1 and DARPP-32, are differentially phosphorylated as a consequence of acquisition and expression of aversive associative learning. Moreover, these results confirm that CTA represents an useful approach to study the molecular basis of associative learning in rats and suggest the involvement of ERK cascade in learning-associated synaptic plasticity.Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience 05/2014; 8:153. · 4.16 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: There are a number of experiments showing an important involvement of amygdala N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptors on consolidation of conditioned taste aversion (CTA) memory. Interestingly, recent evidence has shown that α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) glutamate receptors are particularly involved in CTA retrieval. Memory reconsolidation has been proposed as a destabilization and re-stabilization process induced by memory reactivation. We have recently suggested that reconsolidation could be enabled in the absence of retrieval. Hence, we decided to analyze the participation of AMPA and NMDA receptors of the central (CeA) and basolateral amygdala (BLA) in CTA memory retrieval and reconsolidation. To do so, we tested whether administrations of an AMPA receptor blocker (NBQX) or an NMDA receptor blocker (APV) 15 min before a second acquisition trial could have effects on taste aversion. We found that administration of NBQX in the BLA blocked retrieval, whereas APV blocked reconsolidation in the BLA, and consolidation in the CeA. When we administered both NBQX and APV into the BLA before the second acquisition trial, results showed impairment of both retrieval and reconsolidation. These results further support the idea that reconsolidation is independent of retrieval, since retrieval blockade in the BLA did not impair memory reconsolidation. These results suggest that glutamate receptors have different participation on retrieval and reconsolidation of CTA and further support the hypothesis that these two processes could be independent.Neurobiology of Learning and Memory 05/2014; · 4.04 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A conditioned flavor preference (CFP) can be produced by pairing a flavor (conditioned stimulus, CS +) with the sweet taste of fructose. Systemic dopamine (DA) D1, D2 and NMDA, but not opioid, receptor antagonists significantly reduce the acquisition of the fructose-CFP. A conditioned flavor avoidance (CFA) can be produced by pairing a CS + flavor with the bitter taste of quinine. To evaluate whether fructose-CFP and quinine-CFA share common neurochemical substrates, the present study determined the systemic effects of DA D1 (SCH23390: SCH), DA D2 (raclopride: RAC), NMDA (MK-801) or opioid (naltrexone: NTX) receptor antagonists on the acquisition of quinine-CFA. In Experiment 1, food-restricted male rats were trained over 8 alternating one-bottle sessions to drink an 8% fructose + 0.2% saccharin solution (FS) mixed with one flavor (CS −, e.g., grape) and a different flavor (CS +, e.g., cherry) mixed in a solution (FSQ) containing fructose + saccharin and quinine at 0.001–0.030% concentrations. In six subsequent two-bottle choice tests (1–3: two sessions each) with the CS − and CS + flavors presented in FS solutions, only rats trained with 0.03% quinine displayed a CS + avoidance in Test 1. In Experiment 2, rats received vehicle (Veh), SCH (200 nmol/kg), RAC (200 nmol/kg), MK-801 (100 μg/kg) or NTX (1 mg/kg) 30 min prior to the 8 one-bottle training sessions with CS −/FS and CS +/FSQ (0.03% quinine) solutions. An additional vehicle group (Veh 0.06%) was trained with a CS +/FSQ containing 0.06% quinine. In the two-bottle choice tests, the Veh and RAC groups avoided the CS + flavor in Test 1 only, whereas the SCH, MK801, and NTX groups significantly avoided the CS + in Tests 1–3. The Veh.06% group trained avoided the CS + in Tests 1 and 2, but not Test 3. In Experiment 3, Veh and SCH groups were trained as in Experiment 2, but were tested with CS flavors presented in 0.2% saccharin solutions. The SCH group avoided the CS + flavor in Tests 1–3 while the Veh group avoided the CS + in Test 1 only. Thus whereas DA D1, DA D2 and NMDA, but not opioid receptor antagonism blocked acquisition of sweet taste-based CFP, DA D1, NMDA and opioid, but not DA D2 receptor antagonism enhanced the CFA produced by the bitter taste of quinine.Physiology & Behavior 04/2014; · 3.03 Impact Factor