The effects of naloxone on expression and acquisition of ethanol place conditioning in rats

Nancy M. Bormann, Christopher L. Cunningham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Naloxone has been shown to facilitate extinction of ethanol-induced conditioned place preference (CPP) in mice. The present study extended these findings by examining naloxone's effect on the expression (Experiment 1) and acquisition (Experiment 2) of place conditioning with ethanol in rats. In Experiment 1, alter place conditioning with ethanol (1.8 g/kg, IP), groups N0, N1.5, and N10 received 0, 1.5, or 10 mg/kg naloxone before testing. As expected, ethanol produced a robust conditioned place aversion (CPA). However, naloxone had no effect on expression of CPA. In contrast to studies with mice, the endogenous opioid system does not appear to be involved in the conditioned motivational effects of ethanol in rats. In Experiment 2, groups SE1 and SE2, NS(1.5), NE(1.5), and NE(10), received ethanol alone (1.2 g/kg), naloxone alone (1.5 mg/kg), naloxone 1.5 mg/kg plus ethanol, and naloxone 10 mg/kg plus ethanol during acquisition, respectively. All naloxone-treated groups exhibited CPA. Moreover, group NE(1.5) showed a stronger CPA than group NS(1.5). The CPA produced by coadministration of naloxone and ethanol was attributed to naloxone's effects on the neural processes underlying ethanol's unconditioned aversive effects, or to other nonspecific effects on ethanol's motivational properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)975-982
Number of pages8
JournalPharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Aversion
  • Conditioned place aversion
  • Ethanol
  • Locomotor activity
  • Naloxone
  • Opioid antagonist
  • Place conditioning
  • Rats

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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