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Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2003 Jun;27(6):918-25.

Schedule-induced ethanol self-administration in DBA/2J and C57BL/6J mice.

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Psychology Department, University of Memphis, Tennessee 38152, USA.



The purpose of these experiments was to provide an initial investigation into ethanol self-administration elicited in the schedule-induced polydipsia (SIP) paradigm.


Mature male mice were food deprived to between 80 and 85% of their baseline weight and received 20 daily 1 hr SIP test sessions in which a food pellet (20 mg) was delivered on a fixed-time 60 sec schedule. In different groups, the acquisition of drinking 5% (v/v) ethanol solution (experiment 1) or water (experiment 2) was recorded along with other behaviors that occurred in the test chambers.


Results indicated that C57BL/6J mice drank significantly more ethanol than DBA/2J mice and that C57 mice achieved blood alcohol concentrations as high as 300 mg/dl. Blood alcohol concentrations were consistently correlated with g/kg ethanol intake. The groups did not differ in consumption of water. SIP test sessions using higher concentrations of ethanol (10-20% v/v, experiment 1) or sucrose solutions (0.1-2% w/v, experiment 2) then were performed. Group differences in ethanol consumption were maintained at all ethanol concentrations. Although DBAs drank more of a low concentration of sucrose (0.1%), when expressed as g/kg, sucrose intake was equivalent in the two strains at all concentrations. Analysis of the time course of drinking clearly showed that this behavior was adjunctive in nature.


These results demonstrate the effectiveness of this procedure in inducing ethanol self-administration and its utility for investigating the genetic bases of vulnerability toward excessive ethanol consumption.

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