These studies were conducted to determine whether (a) early N-methyl-D- aspartate (NMDA) receptor blockade impairs defensive behavior and (b) a relationship exists between defensive behavior and the production of granule cells in the dentate gyrus. Rat pups were treated with different doses of the NMDA receptor antagonist CGP43487 on postnatal day (P) 5, and their behavior was observed following exposure to an unfamiliar adult male rat, a potential predator, on P13, P20, and P30. A dose-dependent impairment in freezing behavior was observed in rat pups treated with NMDA receptor antagonist on P13, P20, but not P30. Moreover, a dose-dependent increase in the number of 3H-thymidine-labeled cells in the dentate gyrus was detected following CGP 43487 treatment, suggesting that an inverse relationship exists between cell proliferation and freezing behavior in rat pups following NMDA receptor blockade.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Behavioral Neuroscience