Investigating reactivity to incentive downshift as a correlated response to selection for high alcohol preference and a determinant of rash action and alcohol consumption

by Liana M. Matson

Institution: IUPUI
Year: 2014
Keywords: Affect; Behavioral Genetics; Emotion; Impulsivity; Rodent Model; Ethanol; Impulse control disorders  – Research  – Measurement; Life change events  – Psychological aspects; Behavior genetics  – Research; Psychophysiology  – Genetic aspects; Ethanol  – Physiological effect  – Research; Stress (Psychology); Attitude (Psychology)  – Testing; Self-management (Psychology); Adjustment (Psychology); Affect (Psychology)  – Research; Alcoholism  – Animal models; Substance abuse  – Etiology; Mice as laboratory animals; Reinforcement (Psychology)
Record ID: 2024698
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1805/5964


Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Losing a job or a significant other are examples of incentive shifts that result in negative emotional reactions. The occurrence of negative life events is associated with increased drinking, and alleviation of negative emotions has been cited as a drinking motive for individuals with problematic drinking patterns (Keyes et al., 2011; Adams et al., 2012). Further, there is evidence that certain genotypes drink alcohol in response to stressful negative life events (Blomeyer et al., 2008; Covault et al., 2007). It is possible that shared genetic factors contribute to both alcohol drinking and emotional reactivity, but there is a critical need for this relationship to be understood. The first aim of this proposal will use an incentive downshift paradigm to address whether emotional reactivity is elevated in mice predisposed to drink alcohol. The second aim of this proposal will address if reactivity to an incentive shift can result in rash action using a differential reinforcement of low rates of responding task, and whether this response is also associated with a predisposition for high drinking. The third aim of this proposal will investigate if experimenter administered ethanol reduces contrast effects, and if an incentive shift increases ethanol consumption in a high drinking line. The overall goal of this proposal is to investigate whether reactivity to incentive shift is an important mechanism underlying alcohol drinking in these mice, and the role an incentive shift may play in producing rash action and influencing ethanol consumption.