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Biological Research

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VOGEL, EDGAR H; SOTO, FABIÁN A; CASTRO, MARÍA E  and  SOLAR, PAOLA A. Stimulus specificity in the acquisition and extinction of conditioned taste aversion. Biol. Res. [online]. 2007, vol.40, n.2, pp.123-129. ISSN 0716-9760.

An experiment evaluated whether the acquisition and extinction of conditioned taste aversion in the rat is stimulus-specific by testing the degree of response transfer between sweet and salty tastes. Animals in the paired-same and paired-different groups received a presentation of a gustatory CS and a cyclophosphamide injection US. Nonconditioned control groups received unpaired CS /US presentations or the CS followed by a vehicle injection. Taste avoidance was evaluated in three nonreinforced test sessions. In the paired-same, unpaired and vehicle groups, all test sessions were conducted with the same flavor as originally used in training, whereas the paired-different group was tested with a novel flavor on the first and second sessions and with the originally trained flavor in last session. Stimulus specific acquisition was apparent in the first test session, when the animals in the group paired-same exhibited lower fluid intake than the other three groups. Evidence of specificity of extinction was apparent in the last test session, when animals in the group paired-different exhibited lower fluid intake than the other three groups. These results provide further evidence of stimulus specificity in acquisition and extinction of conditioned taste aversion, supporting the associative interpretation of these phenomena

Keywords : conditioning; cyclophosphamide; extinction; generalization; stimulus specificity; taste aversion.

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