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Behav Brain Res. 2003 Nov 30;146(1-2):131-44.

Lesions of the medial prefrontal cortex or nucleus accumbens core do not impair inhibitory control in rats performing a stop-signal reaction time task.

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Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Cambridge, Downing Site, Cambridge CB2 3EB, UK.


The 'stop-signal' task measures the ability to inhibit a response that has already been initiated, i.e. the ability to stop. Human subjects who have been classified as 'impulsive', for example, those with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), are slower to react to the stop signal, and are often less sensitive to changes in the timing of signals to stop. Imaging studies have implicated fronto-striatal circuitry in the mediation of this form of response control. We report inhibition functions on the stop-signal reaction time (SSRT) task for normal rats, and following damage to the medial prefrontal cortex or to the nucleus accumbens core. Neither group of excitotoxic lesions produced significant deficits on task performance. Subsequent treatment with D-amphetamine (0.3 and 1.0mg/kg) resulted in quicker go-trial reaction times (mRT) overall, but had no significant effect on SSRT. Neither medial prefrontal cortex nor nucleus accumbens lesions had any differential effects on performance following D-amphetamine. These results are discussed with respect to the fronto-striatal circuitry involved in the mediation of behavioural inhibition.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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