The effect of naloxone on object exploration, object recognition and other types of spontaneous behavior
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Object exploration was examined in naloxone injected (1 mg/kg or 4 mg/kg) and saline control rats. Naloxone rats explored an object for a shorter time than did controls, thus indicating a lower investigatory motivation. This effect was dose dependent. Higher drug dose (4 mg/kg) decreased the number of contacts with an object. Both doses increased the mean duration of contacts with an object. The naloxone groups showed intact recognition of a familiar object paired with a new one in two sessions 4 h and 24 h after the injections. The higher drug dose depressed the locomotor activity and wall leaning. Grooming was not influenced by naloxone. The normal daily fluctuations in the level of grooming and locomotion were distorted following the injection of the higher dose of naloxone. The lower dose (1 mg/kg) did not affect the rats' performance in some tests. The results could be viewed as a naloxone related depression of the behavior containing motor elements like locomotion, wall leaning and object approaching. The prolonged contact time with an object could be the result of a lowered flexibility of movement. However, the decrease of rewarding value of exploration could not be ruled out. Possibly, naloxone exerts several different interacting behavioral effects.
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I.Lukaszewsak, Department of Neurophysiology, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology,3 Pasteur St., 02-093 Warsaw, Poland