© 2016 Elsevier Inc. The aim of the present study was to obtain further evidence supporting the validity of a new genetically-based rat model for the study of schizophrenia-relevant symptoms. The Roman high- (RHA-I) and low-avoidance (RLA-I) inbred rats have been psychogenetically selected for their rapid versus extremely poor acquisition of the two-way avoidance task in the shuttle box and present two well-differentiated profiles regarding several traits related to anxiety, impulsivity and sensitivity to (dopaminergic) psychostimulants. In this study we have tested animals from both strains in two behavioral paradigms that are related to schizophrenia, i.e. prepulse inhibition (PPI) and latent inhibition (LI) of fear-potentiated startle (FPS). The results show that while RLA-I rats display good PPI and LI to the context, RHA-Is show an impairment of PPI and no sign of an LI effect, which goes in the direction of the results obtained in schizophrenic patients. Therefore, although further behavioral and psychopharmacological work needs to be done, the present findings and previous studies carried out in our laboratory and others allow us to propose the RHA-I rat strain as a putative genetic rat model of differential schizophrenia-related features.
- Fear-potentiated startle
- Latent inhibition to a context
- Latent inhibition to a cue
- Prepulse inhibition
- Roman high- and low-avoidance rats
- Schizophrenia-related symptoms