RATIONALE: A strong association has been demonstrated between various forms of impulsivity and addiction-like behavior in both humans and rats.
OBJECTIVES: In this study, we investigated how impulsive action, as measured in the 5-choice serial reaction time task (5-CSRTT), is affected during various stages of cocaine taking and seeking and by relapse-provoking stimuli in animals that were trained both in an intravenous cocaine self-administration paradigm and in the 5-CSRTT.
METHODS: Rats were concurrently trained in the 5-CSRTT and cocaine self-administration protocol, and subsequently, the effects of cocaine (7.5 mg/kg) and the pharmacological stressor yohimbine (1.25 mg/kg) were tested in both paradigms.
RESULTS: Cocaine self-administration (5 h/day) transiently altered impulsive action and increased errors of omission in the 5-CSRTT. Pharmacological challenges with cocaine and yohimbine induced increments in impulsive action and reinstated cocaine-seeking responses within the same animals. Further analyses revealed that the effects of cocaine and yohimbine on impulsive action did not correlate with their effects on reinstatement of cocaine seeking.
CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that although impulsive action and relapse can be pharmacologically modulated in the same direction within individuals, these effects appear not to be directly coupled.