Anticholinergic effects in frogs in a Morris water maze analog.
We determined the effect of two doses of the centrally acting anticholinergic drug, atropine sulfate (AS), on the performance of female Northern Leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) in a visual cue analog of the Morris water task. Untreated frogs learned the visually cued task, while frogs treated with 150 mg/kg AS were significantly slower than controls in learning to escape warm water by finding a visible platform, and there was a dose-dependent response, with frogs treated with 50 mg/kg AS performing midway between the higher dose and control frogs. These results suggest that the general role of the cholinergic system in learning is important in amphibians, and that this role is evolutionarily conserved across vertebrate species.
Bilbo, SD; Day, LB; Wilczynski, W
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