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Registration of choice direction in a T-maze in rats under the influence of N-methyl-4-piperidyl cyclopentyl methylethynyl glycolate (PCMG), a centrally acting cholinolytic

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Groups of 10 rats, trained to alternate their choices (left-right) during successive trials in an enclosed T-maze at an intertrial interval of 2 h, were treated according to a 4×4 Latin square scheme, either with the short acting cholinolytic PCMG (0.5 mg/kg i.p.) or the vehicle 40 min after trial I. The animals received either 3 trials with an intertrial interval of 1 h or 2 trials with an intertrial interval of 2 h. There were 2 experiments: the first was run in four replications, the second in 2 replications, the only difference being two forced repetition trials immediately following trial I during the second experiment. The direction chosen, the duration of running and the behaviour shown in the various parts of the maze were analysed. In contrast to the first experiment the second experiment demonstrated that it is possible to insert a “drug” trial between two “non drug” trials without influencing the alternation of choice directions shown during the “non drug” trials. Both pre-choice and post-choice behaviour were markedly changed, except for the actual running. These changes were interpreted as an intensification of conflicts already existing in normal animals, between opposing tendencies under the influence of the drug. The results are discussed in relation to existing hypotheses about the behavioural action of cholinolytics.

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Van der Poel, A.M. Registration of choice direction in a T-maze in rats under the influence of N-methyl-4-piperidyl cyclopentyl methylethynyl glycolate (PCMG), a centrally acting cholinolytic. Psychopharmacologia 31, 271–290 (1973).

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Key words

  • Alternation
  • T-Maze
  • PCMG
  • Cholinolytic
  • Registration
  • Memory
  • Behavioural Conflict
  • Ambivalent Behaviour