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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter February 14, 2018

Effects of dizocilpine-induced glutamatergic blockade in the nucleus accumbens septi on the plus maze test

  • Augusto P.I. Gargiulo EMAIL logo , María P. Gargiulo De Aranda , Mercedes M.L. Gargiulo , Angel J.M. Gargiulo , Andres Acuña , Gustavo C. Baiardi , José V. Lafuente , Adriana I. Landa De Gargiulo , Manuel A. Guevara and Pascual A. Gargiulo



In previous studies, we have observed that specific N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) antagonists and non-NMDA antagonists injected within the nucleus accumbens septi (NAS) induced an anxiolytic-like effect in the plus maze test in rats. In the present study, the effect of intracanalicular blockade of NMDA receptors using dizocilpine in the plus maze was studied in male rats bilaterally cannulated NAS.


Rats were divided into five groups that received either 1 μL injections of saline or dizocilpine (MK-801, [5R,10S]-[+]-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo [a,d] cyclohepten-5,10-imine) in different doses (0.5, 1, 2, or 4 μg) 15 min before testing.


Time spent in the open arm increased under dizocilpine treatment with the two higher doses (2 and 4 μg, p<0.05), extreme arrivals were increased by the three higher doses (1 μg, p<0.05; 2 and 4 μg, p<0.01), and open arm entries by the three higher doses (1, 2, and 4 μg, p<0.05). A dose-effect relationship was observed in all cases.


We conclude that dizocilpine-glutamatergic blockade in the accumbens lead to an anxiolytic-like effect and a behavioral disinhibition related to an increase in some motoric parameters, showing specific behavioral patterns.


We thank Daniel Dueñas for his invaluable cooperation with the graphics and Mrs. Miriam Fraile for her technical contribution. The research reported is part of a collaborative project with Prof. J.D. Delius, Allgemeine Psychologie, Universität Konstanz, Germany supported by the Volkswagen Foundation, Funder Id: 10.13039/501100001663 (Grant Gargiulo-Delius: “Nucleus Accumbens Septi und Kognitives Verhalten”). It was also supported by the First Neuroscience Grant of Latin American Technological Corporation Foundation (Fucotel), and the National University of Cuyo (Project 06/J438, approved by the University Council 4540-R/2013). We also thank Mrs. Sara Roitman for her invaluable cooperation.

  1. Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Research funding: Funding research was received from Volkswagen Foundation, the Latin American Technological Corporation Foundation (Fucotel) and the National University of Cuyo (see aknowledgements).

  3. Employment of leader: Pascual Ángel Gargiulo is Established Researcher of the National Council of Research (CONICET) and Professor of Pharmacology at the National University of Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina.

  4. Honorarium: No special honoraries were received by P.A. Gargiulo for present study.

  5. Competing interests: The funding organization(s) played no role in the study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; or in the decision to submit the report for publication.


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Received: 2017-7-3
Accepted: 2017-12-16
Published Online: 2018-2-14
Published in Print: 2018-6-27

©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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