A Comparison of Cocaine and Diethylpropion under Two Different Schedules of Drug Presentation

  • Chris E. Johanson
  • Charles R. Schuster
Part of the Advances in Behavioral Biology book series (ABBI, volume 21)


Research over the last decade has demonstrated that animals repeat those responses that are followed by intravenous injections of psychomotor stimulant drugs (Schuster and Johanson, 1974). This reinforcing property is shared by a number of drugs of that class, including cocaine, the amphetamines, methylphenidate, phenmetrazine and pipradrol — to mention a few (see Schuster and Johanson, 1974, for references). With few exceptions, every stimulant tested with infrahuman animals has been shown to maintain responding under a wide variety of environmental circumstances. In addition, this phenomenon has been demonstrated in several species, including rats (Pickens and Thompson, 1968), squirrel monkeys (Goldberg, 1973; Stretch, Gerber, and Woods, 1971), rhesus monkeys (Deneau, Yanagita, and Seevers, 1969), and baboons (Findley, Robinson, and Peregrino, 1972). Although the majority of studies has utilized fixed-ratio schedules (every nth response followed by an injection) of presentation (Wilson, Hitomi, and Schuster, 1971; Balster and Schuster, 1973a), many experiments have utilized additional schedules. These include interval schedules (Balster and Schuster, 1973b; Dougherty and Pickens, 1973), concurrent schedules (Iglauer and Woods, 1974; Iglauer, Llewellyn, and Woods, 1975), multi-operant schedules (Johanson and Schuster, 1975; Johanson, 1975) and second-order schedules (Goldberg, 1973). The results from all these studies show that psychomotor stimulant drugs maintain responding regardless of the species of the experimental animal and regardless of the schedule of presentation. Therefore, it appears that one of the pharmacological properties shared by all psychomotor stimulant drugs is the ability to act as a positive reinforcer: each will initiate and maintain an increased frequency of the behavior it follows (Skinner, 1938).


Rhesus Monkey Squirrel Monkey Saline Injection Choice Procedure Cocaine Injection 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chris E. Johanson
    • 1
  • Charles R. Schuster
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Psychiatry and Pharmacological and Physiological SciencesThe University of Chicago, Pritzker School of MedicineChicagoUSA

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