Methamphetamine functions as a positive and negative drug feature in a Pavlovian appetitive discrimination task

Carmela M. Reichel, Jamie L. Wilkinson, Rick A. Bevins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


This research determined the ability of methamphetamine to serve as a positive or negative feature, and assessed the ability of bupropion, cocaine, and naloxone to substitute for the methamphetamine features. Rats received methamphetamine (0.5 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) or saline 15 min before a conditioning session. For the feature positive (FP) group, offset of 15-s cue lights was followed by access to sucrose on methamphetamine sessions; sucrose was withheld during saline sessions. For the feature negative (FN) group, the light offset was followed by sucrose on saline sessions; sucrose was withheld during methamphetamine sessions. During acquisition, the FP group had higher responding on methamphetamine sessions than on saline sessions. For the FN group, responding was higher on saline sessions than on methamphetamine sessions. Conditioned responding was sensitive to methamphetamine dose. For the FP group, bupropion and cocaine fully and partially substituted for methamphetamine, respectively. In contrast, both drugs fully substituted for methamphetamine in the FN group. Naloxone did not substitute in either set of rats. FP-trained rats were more sensitive to the locomotor stimulating effects of the test drugs than FN-trained rats. This research demonstrates that the pharmacological effects of methamphetamine function as a FP or FN in this Pavlovian discrimination task and that training history can affect conditioned responding and locomotor effects evoked by a drug.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)755-765
Number of pages11
JournalBehavioural pharmacology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2007


  • Bupropion
  • Classical conditioning
  • Cocaine
  • Drug occasion setting
  • Pavlovian drug-discrimination
  • Psychostimulant addiction
  • Rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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