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Physiol Behav. 2001 Feb;72(3):355-8.

Naloxone attenuates the conditioned place preference induced by wheel running in rats.

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Department of Psychology, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's, NF, Canada A1B 3X9.


Pairings, during which an episode of wheel running is followed by confinement in a distinctive place, produce conditioned place preference (CPP) in rats. This finding indicates that wheel running has a rewarding effect that outlasts the activity itself. In two similar experiments, we tested the hypothesis that this rewarding effect of wheel running is mediated by endogenous opioids. During a paired trial, the rats in the naloxone group were first allowed to wheel run for 2 h, then injected with naloxone (0.5 or 0.1 mg/kg in Experiments 1 and 2, respectively), and 10 min later placed in a distinctive chamber. During an unpaired trial, these rats were confined in an adjoining chamber without wheel running. Naloxone was injected before placement in both chambers, so that if naloxone-induced conditioned place aversion occurred, it would have counteracting effects on performance during the preference test. The rats in the saline group were similarly treated, except that saline was injected instead of naloxone. CPP occurred in the saline group, but not in the naloxone group. Thus, naloxone attenuated the CPP induced by wheel running. This finding supports the hypothesis that the rewarding effect of wheel running is mediated by endogenous opioids.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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