Contextual fear conditioning and baseline startle responses in the rat fear-potentiated startle test: a comparison of benzodiazepine/γ-aminobutyric acid-A receptor agonists

@article{Guscott2000ContextualFC,
  title={Contextual fear conditioning and baseline startle responses in the rat fear-potentiated startle test: a comparison of benzodiazepine/$\gamma$-aminobutyric acid-A receptor agonists},
  author={Martin R Guscott and Gina P Cook and Linda J. Bristow},
  journal={Behavioural Pharmacology},
  year={2000},
  volume={11},
  pages={495-504}
}
In the rat, fear-potentiated startle (FPS) test animals are first trained to associate brief light presentations with a mild electric footshock and then tested for startle responses to acoustic stimuli, delivered either in darkness (i.e. baseline startle) or after the conditioning stimulus. Following light presentation the magnitude of the startle response is markedly increased, and the test is commonly used to distinguish anxiolytic drug effects (i.e. a reduction in FPS) from non-specific… 

Fear: Potentiation and Startle

GABA-A and 5-HT1A Receptor Agonists Block Expression of Fear-Potentiated Startle in Mice

Mice showed robust acquisition (larger acoustic startle reflex in the presence of the CS) of FPS after as few as eight CS–US pairings, and the predictive validity of the FPS model of anxiolytic drug action in mice is supported.

Benzodiazepines have no effect on fear-potentiated startle in humans

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The light-enhanced startle paradigm as a putative animal model for anxiety: effects of chlordiazepoxide, flesinoxan and fluvoxamine

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Anxiolytic-like effects of the neurokinin 1 receptor antagonist GR-205171 in the elevated plus maze and contextual fear-potentiated startle model of anxiety in gerbils

The findings of this study support other evidence for anxiolytic activity of NK1 receptor antagonists and provide a novel conditioned fear test that may be an appropriate procedure to test other NK1 antagonists for preclinical anxioleytic activity in gerbils.

Phasic and Sustained Fear are Pharmacologically Dissociable in Rats

The results indicate that phasic and sustained fear responses can be pharmacologically dissociated, further validating this distinction, and suggest that sustained startle increases may be especially useful as anxiety models and anxiolytic screens.

Reduction of fear-potentiated startle by benzodiazepines in C57BL/6J mice

A modified and pharmacologically-validated paradigm is used to assess Fear-potentiated startle in mice thereby providing a powerful tool to examine the neurobiology of PTSD in genetic models of anxiety generated on the C57BL/6J background.

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