Effects of lesions in different nuclei of the amygdala on conditioned taste aversion
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Conditioned taste aversion (CTA) is an adaptive learning that depends on brain mechanisms not completely identified. The amygdala is one of the structures that make up these mechanisms, but the involvement of its nuclei in the acquisition of CTA is unclear. Lesion studies suggest that the basolateral complex of the amygdala, including the basolateral and lateral amygdala, could be involved in CTA. The central amygdala has also been considered as an important nucleus for the acquisition of CTA in some studies. However, to the best of our knowledge, the effect of lesions of the basolateral complex of the amygdala on the acquisition of CTA has not been directly compared with the effect of lesions of the central and medial nuclei of the amygdala. The aim of this study is to compare the effect of lesions of different nuclei of the amygdala (the central and medial amygdala and the basolateral complex) on the acquisition of taste aversion in male Wistar rats. The results indicate that lesions of the basolateral complex of the amygdala reduce the magnitude of the CTA when compared with lesions of the other nuclei and with animals without lesions. These findings suggest that the involvement of the amygdala in the acquisition of CTA seems to depend particularly on the integrity of the basolateral complex of the amygdala.
KeywordsBasolateral amygdala Central amygdala Learning Medial amygdala Taste aversion
This work was supported by a CICYT Grant (BSO2002-01215), Ministry of Science and Technology (MICYT), Spain. The authors wish to thank the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions and M. Gallo, I. Morón, and M. A. Ballesteros for their contribution to the execution of the experiment.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.
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