Outbred Roman high- (RHA) and low-avoidance (RLA) rats are selected for respectively rapid vs. poor acquisition of the active avoidance response and display different copulatory patterns when exposed to a sexually receptive female, with RHA rats showing more robust sexual motivation and better performance than RLA rats also after repeated sexual activity. Here we show that the distinct patterns of sexual behaviour of the Roman lines are correlated with differences in the activity of the dopaminergic mesolimbic system, which plays a key role in sexual motivation and copulatory performance. Thus, differential increases in the concentrations of dopamine and its main metabolite 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, occurred in dialysates obtained from the nucleus accumbens shell of naïve and sexually experienced Roman rats during the anticipatory and consummatory phases of sexual activity. These differences were particularly evident between sexually naïve RHA and RLA rats and tended to diminish but still persisted between sexually experienced rats, as did the differences in sexual behaviour. Analysis of the biochemical and behavioural findings showed that, while in RHA rats sexual experience caused a shift in the changes in both the dopaminergic activity and copulation towards the first period of the sexual test, in RLA rats sexual experience increased dopaminergic activity and copulation throughout the entire test. Therefore, this study adds experimental support to the view that the different sexual patterns of the Roman lines are due, at least in part, to a more robust functional tone of the mesolimbic dopaminergic system of RHA rats.
|Titolo:||Involvement of dopamine in the differences in sexual behaviour between Roman high and low avoidance rats: An intracerebral microdialysis study|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2015|
|Tipologia:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|