Competition between memory systems: Acetylcholine release in the hippocampus correlates negatively with good performance on an amygdala-dependent task

Christa K. McIntyre, Shanthi N. Pal, Lisa K. Marriott, Paul E. Gold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

85 Scopus citations

Abstract

Lesions of the amygdala impair acquisition of a food conditioned place preference (CPP) task. In contrast, lesions of the fornix facilitate acquisition on this task, showing that an intact hippocampal system can interfere with learning an amygdala-dependent task. Our recent findings indicate that acetylcholine (ACh) release in the hippocampus increases while rats perform a hippocampus-dependent spontaneous alternation task. To the extent that ACh output in the hippocampus reflects activation of that brain area in learning and memory, the results obtained with fornix lesions suggest that ACh release in the hippocampus might be negatively correlated with learning on a CPP task. Using in vivo microdialysis, release of ACh was measured in the hippocampus while rats learned and were tested on an amygdala-dependent CPP task and a hippocampus-dependent spontaneous alternation task. Release of ACh in the hippocampus increased when rats were tested on either task. The magnitude of the increase in release of hippocampal ACh was negatively correlated with good performance on the amygdala-dependent CPP task. These findings suggest that ACh release may reflect activation and participation of the hippocampus in learning and memory, but in a manner that can be detrimental to performance on a task dependent on another brain area.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1171-1176
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume22
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2002

Keywords

  • Acetylcholine
  • Amygdala
  • Competition
  • Conditioned place preference
  • Hippocampus
  • Memory systems
  • Microdialysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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