Ro 04-6790-induced cognitive enhancement: No effect in trace conditioning and novel object recognition procedures in adult male Wistar rats

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Thur, K.E. ; Nelson, A.J.D. ; Cassaday, H.J. (2014)
  • Publisher: Elsevier
  • Journal: Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior, volume 127, pages 42-48 (issn: 0091-3057, eissn: 1873-5177)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2014.10.006, pmc: PMC4258611
  • Subject: Toxicology | Biological Psychiatry | Object recognition | Trace conditioning | Rat | Biochemistry | Pharmacology | Behavioral Neuroscience | Clinical Biochemistry | 5-Hydroxytryptamine6 receptor | Article | Ro 04-6790

The evidence for cognitively enhancing effects of 5-hydroxytryptamine6 (5-HT6) receptor antagonists such as Ro 04-6790 is inconsistent and seems to depend on the behavioural test variant in use. Trace conditioning holds promise as a behavioral assay for hippocampus-dependent working memory function. Accordingly, Experiment 1 assessed the effect of Ro 04-6790 (5 and 10 mg/kg i.p.) on associating a noise conditioned stimulus paired with foot shock (unconditioned stimulus) at a 3 or 30 s trace interval in adult male Wistar rats. Contextual conditioning was measured as suppression to the contextual cues provided by the experimental chambers and as suppression to a temporally extended light background stimulus which provided an experimental context. Experiment 2 assessed the effect of Ro 04-6790 (5 and 10 mg/kg i.p.) on recognition memory as tested by the exploration of novel relative to familiar objects in an open arena. In Experiment 1, Ro 04-6790 (5 and 10 mg/kg) was without effect on trace and contextual conditioning. In Experiment 2, there was no indication of the expected improvement under Ro 04-6790 at the same doses previously found to enhance recognition memory as measured in tests of novel object exploration. Thus, there was no evidence that treatment with the 5-HT6 receptor antagonist Ro 04-6790 acted as a cognitive enhancer in either trace conditioning or object recognition procedures. We cannot exclude the possibility that the experimental procedures used in the present study would have been sensitive to the cognitive enhancing effects of Ro 04-6790 in a different dose range, behavioral test variant, or in a different strain of rat. Nonetheless the drug treatment was not ineffective in that object exploration was reduced under 10 mg/kg Ro 04-6790.
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