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Role of direct and indirect basal ganglia pathways on emotional memory evaluated by classical fear conditioning in rodents

Grant number: 16/12132-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2017
Effective date (End): April 30, 2018
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Psychology - Physiological Psychology
Principal researcher:Tatiana Lima Ferreira
Grantee:José Maurício Nunes de Oliveira Junior
Home Institution: Centro de Matemática, Computação e Cognição (CMCC). Universidade Federal do ABC (UFABC). Ministério da Educação (Brasil). Santo André , SP, Brazil


The fear-related memory is essential for survival and is highly conserved evolutionarily. A common way to study it is pairing a neutral stimulus with aversive one (classical fear conditioning). Several studies showed that amygdala is the main cerebral region related to acquisition and expression of fear behavior but many evidence also point to the dorsal striatum (DS) in processing pleasure and aversion. The striatum has two major dopaminergic pathways, called direct and indirect pathways. It is hypothesized that the direct pathway, mainly composed of neurons with dopamine D1 recpetor is related to the movement and pleasure, while the indirect pathway, mainly composed of neurons with dopamine D2 receptors is related to inhibition of movement and possibly aversion. This project aims to investigate the involvement of dopaminergic transmission in the striatal region during tone fear conditioning. For this we will inject D1 and D2 antagonists in the medial or lateral DS followed by evaluation of freezing behavior and locomotion. (AU)

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