Differential involvement of nucleus accumbens shell and core subregions in maternal memory in postpartum female rats

Ming Li, Alison S. Fleming

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

71 Scopus citations

Abstract

Maternal memory refers to the long-term retention of maternal responsiveness as a consequence of animals' prior experiences with their young. This study examined the relative roles of 2 subregions of the nucleus accumbens (NA; shell and core) in maternal memory in rats. NA shell lesions either before or immediately after a short experience significantly disrupted maternal memory, but lesions after a 24-hr maternal experience had no effect. NA core lesions had no significant impact on maternal memory. Cycloheximide (a protein synthesis inhibitor) at a high dose (25 μg/μl) infused in the NA shell immediately after 1 hr of maternal experience also significantly disrupted maternal memory, whereas infusions in the medial preoptic area had no effect. It was concluded that the NA shell, but not the NA core, is involved in the consolidation of maternal memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)426-445
Number of pages20
JournalBehavioral Neuroscience
Volume117
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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