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Neuroreport. 2001 Aug 8;12(11):2549-52.

Sub-second changes in accumbal dopamine during sexual behavior in male rats.

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Department of Chemistry and Neuroscience Center, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA.


Transient (200--900 ms), high concentrations (200--500 nM) of dopamine, measured using fast-scan cyclic voltammetry, occurred in the nucleus accumbens core of male rats at the presentation of a receptive female. Additional dopamine signals were observed during subsequent approach behavior. Background-subtracted cyclic voltammograms of the naturally-evoked signals matched those of electrically-evoked dopamine measured at the same recording sites. Administration of nomifensine amplified natural and evoked dopamine release, and increased the frequency of detectable signals. While gradual changes in dopamine concentration during sexual behavior have been well established, these findings dramatically improve the time resolution. The observed dopamine transients, probably resulting from neuronal burst firing, represent the first direct correlation of dopamine with sexual behavior on a sub-second time scale.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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