This study examined the relationship between ethanol's thermal and motivational effects in a place conditioning task. In three experiments, male albino rats were exposed to a differential conditioning procedure that paired a distinctive tactile stimulus with ethanol (1.2 or 1.8 g/kg) or lithium chloride (3 meq/kg); a different stimulus was paired with saline. Different groups were exposed to ambient temperatures (Ta) of 5°, 21° or 32 °C during each 60-min conditioning trial. Both ethanol and lithium chloride produced hypothermia and conditioned place aversion in rats conditioned at normal Ta. Exposure to high Ta reduced drug-induced hypothermia, increased activity, and decreased conditioned place aversion. Exposure to low Ta did not enhance drug-induced hypothermia or change conditioned place aversion. In general, these findings support the suggestion that the hedonic effects of ethanol and lithium chloride interact with their thermal effects.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Behavioral Neuroscience