Suppression of exploratory behavior by aversive stimulation

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To determine the effects of shock-induced fear on exploratory behavior, 144 mice were observed in an open field. Conditions compared were 0, 2, 4, or 8 shocks in the test situation, a familiar vs. a novel test situation, and shock vs. no shock administered prior to the exploratory test. The test shock suppressed behavior as a negatively accelerated function of the number of shocks and suppression tended to be relatively greater in the familiar than in the novel environment. Preshock did not influence the suppressive effects of test shock, although preshock did have the general consequence of reducing levels of exploratory behavior. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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