, Volume 110, Issue 1-2, pp 152-158

Subsensitivity to rewarding and locomotor stimulant effects of a dopamine agonist following chronic mild stress

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Chronic exposure to very mild unpredictable stress has previously been found to reduce or abolish the acquisition of place preference conditioning. In the present study, chronic mild stress was found to abolish the acquisition of preferences for a distinctive environment paired with systemic administration of amphetamine (0.5 mg/kg) or quinpirole (100–400 µg/kg) or with quinpirole (0.75 µg) administered bilaterally within the nucleus accumbens. The locomotor stimulant effects of quinpirole (100–400 µg/kg) were also attenuated in stressed animals. The results suggest that decreased sensitivity to reward following chronic mild stress results from a decreased sensitivity of dopamine D2 receptors within the nucleus accumbens.