Alterations in ethanol seeking and self-administration following yohimbine in selectively bred alcohol-preferring (P) and high alcohol drinking (HAD-2) rats

Megan L. Bertholomey, Terril L. Verplaetse, Cristine L. Czachowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Evidence suggests that stress increases alcohol drinking and promotes relapse in humans. Animal models that assess related behaviors include the sipper tube ethanol self-administration and the stress-induced reinstatement paradigms. While selectively bred for the same high-ethanol-drinking behavior, alcohol-preferring P rats appear to show greater sensitivity to ethanol reinforcement than high-alcohol-drinking HAD rats. The present experiment tested the effects of the pharmacological stressor, yohimbine, on the motivation to seek and consume ethanol implementing a combined sipper tube/reinstatement model using male P and HAD-2 rats. Following training to self-administer ethanol using the sipper tube procedure, rats were tested for the effects of yohimbine (0.625-2.5. mg/kg) on ethanol drinking. Subsequently, rats were tested for the effects of 1.25. mg/kg yohimbine on reinstatement of ethanol seeking. Yohimbine (0.625 and 1.25. mg/kg) increased ethanol self-administration, and the latter dose also decreased latency to complete the response requirement. Yohimbine elicited reinstatement of ethanol seeking in both lines. HAD-2 rats drank more ethanol, but showed similar responding on the ethanol-associated lever compared to P rats. These findings extend both the reinstatement and sipper tube models and justify further exploration of this unique combined paradigm. Despite prior evidence suggesting that P rats are more motivated to seek and consume ethanol, differences in these behaviors between P and HAD-2 rats were not systematic in the present experiment. Further investigation may elucidate whether either selected line may be more sensitive than other selectively bred or outbred rats to stress-related changes in ethanol's reinforcing effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-258
Number of pages7
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume238
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2013

Keywords

  • Binge drinking
  • Motivation
  • Reinstatement
  • Relapse
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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