Emergence neophobia correlates with hippocampal and cortical glutamate receptor binding in rats Academic Article uri icon


  • Previous work from our laboratory indicated that emergence neophobia is highly correlated with perforant path long-term potentiation (LTP) in rats. In the present study, we examined the relationship between hippocampal and cortical alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate (AMPA) receptors and emergence behavior in rats. Emergence neophobia was assessed in an exploratory task that provided a choice between a novel alley and a familiar nest box. Quantitative autoradiography using radiolabeled ligands specific for the AMPA subclass of glutamate receptors was performed on frozen brain sections. Both [3H]AMPA and [3H]CNQX (6-cyano-7-nitro-[3H]quinoxaline- 2,3-dione, an AMPA receptor antagonist) binding in the dentate gyrus (stratum moleculare), hippocampal area CA1 (stratum radiatum), and the parietal cortex overlying the hippocampus were significantly correlated with emergence behavior. The correlations indicated that neophobic rats, which had longer latencies to enter the novel alley, made fewer entries into the alley, and spent less time in the novel alley during a 10-min test than their neophilic counterparts, had higher levels of AMPA receptor binding. These results suggest that individual differences in specific hippocampal AMPA receptors reflect variability in a specific class of hippocampal-dependent behaviors.

author list (cited authors)

  • Maren, S., Tocco, G., Chavanne, F., Baudry, M., Thompson, R. F., & Mitchell, D.

citation count

  • 7

publication date

  • July 1994