Appetitive operant conditioning

appetitive-operant-conditioningEvaluation of instrumental learning

We developed a one-night automated home-cage-based operant test that effectively tests appetitive conditioning during in animals that are not food-deprived1. During this night, animals are rewarded with a food pellet in the reward zone after a visit on top of the shelter. In response to the task, mice start to make direct movements from the reward zone to the top of the shelter, an index of instrumental learning.

Genetic background affects appetitive operant conditioning

This task was successfully used to characterize inbred strains. BALB/cJ mice show a large instrumental learning response in the appetitive operant conditioning task1.

1A 1-night operant learning task without food-restriction differentiates among mouse strains in an automated home-cage environment. Remmelink, Loos et al., Behav Brain Res. 2015; 283:53