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Prog Brain Res. 2008;167:257-61.

Strain specific fear behaviour and glucocorticoid response to aversive events: modelling PTSD in mice.

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  • 1Division of Medical Pharmacology, LACDR/LUMC, Gorlaeus Laboratories, Leiden University, 2300 RA, Leiden, The Netherlands.


"Pavlovian" fear conditioning in rodents allows studying the formation and extinction of fear memories. Male C57BL/6J but not BALB/c mice showed differential fear memory performance expressed as freezing and scanning behaviour for context and cue. Glucocorticoid stress hormones modulate the processing of fear-related stimuli. The augmented corticosterone response of BALB/c mice to conditioning and testing, therefore, might have contributed to the strain-dependent formation of fear memories. We propose that modulation of extinction processes by glucocorticoids can be relevant in modelling anxiety disorders.

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