Adaptation of a primate operant test battery to the rat: effects of chlorpromazine.


The National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR) Operant Test Battery (OTB) has been used extensively in rhesus monkeys to characterize the effects of drugs and toxicants on the performance of tasks designed to model several cognitive functions. Recently, the majority of the OTB tasks have been adapted for use in rats. The current study is the first to examine the effects of a prototypic pharmacological agent previously assessed in monkeys on rat OTB performance. The effects of the dopamine antagonist chlorpromazine (0.56-5.6 mg/kg, i.p.) were assessed in rats performing tasks designed to model auditory-visual-position discrimination, learning, time estimation, and appetitive motivation. All four tasks were equally sensitive to the behavioral effects of chlorpromazine. This pattern of sensitivity was very similar to that obtained when chlorpromazine was tested in monkeys performing the OTB. These data thus suggest that operant tasks designed to model cognitive functions in monkeys can also be used in rats, and that the effects of chlorpromazine on the performance of these tasks may be predictive of results obtained with monkeys. Further characterization of the rat OTB using prototypic pharmacological agents will further determine the extent to which drug effects on rat OTB performance can be generalized to primates.

Cite this paper

@article{Mayorga2000AdaptationOA, title={Adaptation of a primate operant test battery to the rat: effects of chlorpromazine.}, author={Arthur J. Mayorga and E. Jon Popke and Charles M Fogle and Merle G. Paule}, journal={Neurotoxicology and teratology}, year={2000}, volume={22 1}, pages={31-9} }