Send to

Choose Destination
Behav Brain Res. 2011 Jan 1;216(1):159-65. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2010.07.022. Epub 2010 Jul 23.

Novelty seeking, incentive salience and acquisition of cocaine self-administration in the rat.

Author information

University of Kentucky, Department of Psychology, 741 S. Limestone, BBSRB, Room 447, Lexington, KY 40536-0509, United States.


It has been suggested that incentive salience plays a major role in drug abuse and the development of addiction. Additionally, novelty seeking has been identified as a significant risk factor for drug abuse. However, how differences in the readiness to attribute incentive salience relate to novelty seeking and drug abuse vulnerability has not been explored. The present experiments examined how individual differences in incentive salience attribution relate to novelty seeking and acquisition of cocaine self-administration in a preclinical model. Rats were first assessed in an inescapable novelty task and a novelty place preference task (measures of novelty seeking), followed by a Pavlovian conditioned approach task for food (a measure of incentive salience attribution). Rats then were trained to self-administer cocaine (0.3 or 1.0 mg/kg/infusion) using an autoshaping procedure. The results demonstrate that animals that attributed incentive salience to a food-associated cue were higher novelty seekers and acquired cocaine self-administration more quickly at the lower dose. The results suggest that novelty-seeking behavior may be a mediator of incentive salience attribution and that incentive salience magnitude may be an indicator of drug reward.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center