3 years ago

Methamphetamine promotes habitual action and alters the density of striatal glutamate receptor and vesicular proteins in dorsal striatum

Methamphetamine promotes habitual action and alters the density of striatal glutamate receptor and vesicular proteins in dorsal striatum
Laura H. Corbit, Bernard W. Balleine, Teri M. Furlong, Robert A. Brown
Goal-directed actions are controlled by the value of the consequences they produce and so increase when what they produce is valuable and decrease when it is not. With continued invariant practice, however, goal-directed actions can become habits, controlled not by their consequences but by antecedent, reward-related states and stimuli. Here, we show that pre-exposure to methamphetamine (METH) caused abnormally rapid development of habitual control. Furthermore, these drug-induced habits differed strikingly from conventional habits; we found that they were insensitive both to changes in reward value and to the effects of negative feedback. In addition to these behavioral changes, METH exposure produced bidirectional changes to synaptic proteins in the dorsal striatum. In the dorsomedial striatum, a structure critical for goal-directed action, METH exposure was associated with a reduction in glutamate receptor and glutamate vesicular proteins, whereas in the dorsolateral striatum, a region that has previously been implicated in habit learning, there was an increase in these proteins. Together, these results indicate that METH exposure promotes habitual control of action that appears to be the result of bidirectional changes in glutamatergic transmission in the circuits underlying goal-directed and habit-based learning. We demonstrated that exposure to methamphetamine (METH) accelerates habitual control of behavior and alters levels of glutamate-related proteins in dorsal striatum. Using an outcome-devaluation instrumental task, we showed that the actions of METH exposed rats were insensitive to changes in reward value and to negative feedback. METH also produced bidirectional changes in glutamate receptor and glutamate vesicular proteins in dorsomedial and dorsolateral striatum suggesting that METH alters glutamate transmission in circuits underlying goal-directed and habit-based learning.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/adb.12534

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