One-way avoidance learning and diazepam in female roman high-avoidance and low-avoidance rats

Carmen Torres, Ma Dolores Escarabajal, Antonio Cándido, Lourdes De La Torre, Ma José Gómez, Antonio Maldonado, Adolf Tobeña, Alberto Fernández-Teruel

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10 Citations (Scopus)


The goal of this experiment was to study the influence of the time spent in the safe compartment (30 vs. 1 s) and of an intraperitoneal injection of diazepam (1 mg/kg vs. vehicle) on one-way avoidance learning, in inbred female roman high-avoidance and roman low-avoidance rats. Rats learned to run from a danger compartment, where they received a warning signal (88 dB tone) followed by a 1 mA electric footshock, to a safe compartment, where these stimuli were not presented. The number of trials needed to reach 10 consecutive avoidance responses was the dependent variable. Roman low-avoidance rats exposed to 1 s in the safe compartment showed poorer performance than their roman high-avoidance counterparts. These differences were not observed in rats exposed to 30 s in the safe place, and were abolished by the injection of diazepam. These results suggest the importance of fear and reinforcement in one-way avoidance learning and its usefulness for studying emotional processes underlying genetic or pharmacological manipulations. © 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-253
JournalBehavioural Pharmacology
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2007


  • Anxiety
  • Avoidance
  • Diazepam
  • Fear
  • Freezing
  • Relief
  • Roman rats


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