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Neurosci Lett. 2010 Mar 8;471(3):144-7. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2010.01.028. Epub 2010 Jan 25.

Effect of subchronic phencyclidine administration on sucrose preference and hippocampal parvalbumin immunoreactivity in the rat.

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  • 1Health Innovations Research Institute and School of Medical Sciences, RMIT University, Bundoora, Victoria 3083, Australia. <>


Persistent blockade of NMDA receptor function by repeated phencyclidine dosing produces pathophysiological changes that model deficits observed in schizophrenia. The present study investigates the effects of subchronic phencyclidine administration (PCP; 2 or 5mg/kg bi-daily for 7 days followed by a drug-free period) on sucrose choice, a measure of anhedonia. Sucrose preference in a two-bottle sucrose-water choice test was assessed 1 and 2 weeks after PCP. Results showed no differences in sucrose intake between PCP rats and controls, nor a difference in water intake or total volume of liquid consumed at either time-point. Six weeks post-PCP, analysis of brains showed a reduction in expression of parvalbumin immunoreactive neurons in the hippocampus with significant reductions localised to the CA1 and CA2/3 regions. These results demonstrate that while subchronic PCP may not be a valid model for the negative symptom of anhedonia observed in schizophrenia, it induces pathology in the brain in hippocampal subregions that are reminiscent of changes observed in schizophrenia.

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