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J Neurochem. 1997 Feb;68(2):691-7.

Dopaminergic and serotonergic neurotransmission systems are differentially involved in auditory cortex learning: a long-term microdialysis study of metabolites.

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Federal Institute for Neurobiology, Magdeburg, Germany.


Auditory cortex has been shown to be a site of widespread neuronal learning processes even in the context of simple auditory conditioning behavior. In view of their presumed role in determining behavioral and motivational relevance of incoming information we investigated whether the dopaminergic and serotonergic systems are involved in auditory cortex learning. Using a chronic brain microdialysis technique over 4 days, samples from auditory cortex were obtained before, during, and after daily footshock avoidance training simultaneously from trained gerbils and passive control animals or pseudotrained animals. Because of detection limits of dopamine and serotonin in auditory cortex, the response profiles of extracellular homovanillic acid as the metabolite of the dopaminergic system and of 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid as the metabolite of the serotonergic system were determined from consecutive dialysis samples each day. The response of the dopaminergic system appeared to reflect the initial formation of the behaviorally relevant association exclusively during the first training day, whereas the serotonergic response appeared to correlate with the stress level of animals.

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