Functional ablation studies of CTA
A striking feature of CTA is that the eliciting US can be applied to a rat anaesthetized for more then 30 minutes after the gustatory CS. On the other hand, CS administration during narcosis prevents CTA. Similar blockade can also be achieved by hypothermia below 32°C. If the block is induced after CS presentation, its application during administration of the US does not block CTA formation. Another useful functional ablation procedure is spreading EEG depression, which blocks cortical and subcortical structures (amygdala, basal ganglia) when applied during action of the gustatory CS but does not mitigate the US. Still clearer is the effect of local anaesthetics on brain centers. Injection of 10 ng tetrodotoxin (TTX) into the insular cortex causing a block of proteosynthesis by anisomycin does not interfere with CS drinking but prevents CTA formation. Continuation of the consolidation process is indicated by increased activity (+40%) of the protein kinase C (PKC) in PBN 24h to 48h after a single saccharin-LiCl pairing.
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