ERIC Number: EJ784435
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Estrogen Abolishes Latent Inhibition in Ovariectomized Female Rats
Nofrey, Barbara S.; Ben-Shahar, Osnat M.; Brake, Wayne G.
Brain and Cognition, v66 n2 p156-160 Mar 2008
Estrogen is frequently prescribed as a method of birth control and as hormone replacement therapy for post-menopausal women with varied effects on cognition. Here the effects of estrogen on attention were examined using the latent inhibition (LI) behavioral paradigm. Ovariectomized (OVX) female rats were given either estrogen benzoate (EB, 10 or 100[mu]g/ml/kg; SC) or sesame oil vehicle. Males and OVX females receiving vehicle displayed normal LI. In contrast, LI was abolished in OVX females receiving EB. The lack of LI in OVX females receiving EB was a result of low suppression ratios, reflecting strong conditioning between the tone and the shock in these subjects even if they were pre-exposed to the tone. Thus, estrogen impaired the ability of OVX females to ignore irrelevant stimuli. Since different cognitive tasks vary in their required ability to ignore irrelevant stimuli, these results may account for some of the variations in the current literature on estrogen and cognition.
Descriptors: Stimuli, Females, Pregnancy, Inhibition, Animals, Attention, Cognitive Processes, Metabolism
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
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