Conditioned Ethanol Aversion in Rats Induced by Voluntary Wheel Running, Forced Swimming, and Electric Shock: An Implication for Aversion Therapy of Alcoholism

Nakajima, Sadahiko
April 2004
Integrative Physiological & Behavioral Science;Apr-Jun2004, Vol. 39 Issue 2, p95
Academic Journal
This study was planned to demonstrate rats' acquisition of aversion to ethanol solution consumed before voluntary running, forced swimming, or electric shock delivery. Wistar rats under water deprivation were allotted to four groups of eight rats each, and all rats were allowed to drink 5% ethanol solution for 15 min. Immediately after the ethanol drinking, rats of Group Run were put into the individual running wheels for 15 min, those of Group Swim were put into the individual swimming pools for 15 min, those of Group Shock received electric shocks for 15 min (15 0.45-mA shocks of 0.7s with the intershock interval of 1 min) in the individual small chambers, and those of Group Control were directly returned back to the home cages. This procedure was repeated for six days, followed by a two-day choice test of ethanol aversion where a bottle containing 5% ethanol solution and a bottle of tap water were simultaneously presented for 15 min. In the test, Groups Run, Swim, and Shock drank ethanol solution significantly less than tap water, while Group Control drank both fluids equally. The effects of running, swimming, and shock were equivalent. The successful demonstration of acquired ethanol aversion induced by exercise (running and swimming) or shock in rats suggests an avenue for clinical application of exercise and shock treatments for human alcoholics, though there are many issues to be resolved before the practical use.


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