Appetitive motivational states differ in their ability to augment aversive fear conditioning in rats (Rattus norvegicus). Academic Article uri icon


  • The present experiments compared the effects of 2 appetitive motivational states on the acquisition of Pavlovian fear conditioning in rats (Rattus norvegicus). In Experiment 1, rats were deprived of either water or food prior to contextual fear conditioning, which consisted of the delivery of a single footshock in a novel observation chamber. Conditional fear to the contextual cues of the conditioning chamber was measured by observing freezing behavior. The results revealed that water, but not food, deprivation enhanced conditional freezing to contextual stimuli paired with footshock. Experiment 2 indicated that the different impact of food or water deprivation on the acquisition of conditional freezing was not due to differential generalization decrements during extinction testing. Together, these experiments suggest that the modulation of fear conditioning by deprivation state is specific to certain motivational systems.

published proceedings

  • J Exp Psychol Anim Behav Process

author list (cited authors)

  • Maren, S., & Fanselow, M. S.

citation count

  • 13

complete list of authors

  • Maren, S||Fanselow, MS

publication date

  • July 1998