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The Espinet and the perceptual learning effects in flavour aversion conditioning: Do they depend on a common inhibitory mechanism?

By A. A. Artigas, J. Sansa and J. Prados


In three experiments rats were given short or long preexposure (4 or 10 sessions) to two compound flavours, AX and BX, according to an intermixed or a blocked schedule. Following preexposure, aversion conditioning trials were given with AX as the conditioned stimulus (CS). In Experiments 1 and 2, retardation and summation tests were then carried out to assess the inhibitory properties of B (an Espinet procedure). In Experiment 3, test trials evaluated generalization from AX to BX (the standard perceptual learning procedure). The results showed that B performed as an inhibitor of the unconditioned stimulus (US; an Espinet effect) only after long intermixed preexposure, whereas a reliable perceptual learning effect was observed both after short and after long preeexposure. The observation that B had no detectable inhibitory properties after short preexposure casts doubt on the suggestion that inhibitory learning is responsible for perceptual learning after brief exposure to AX and BX

Year: 2006
DOI identifier: 10.1080/02724990544000022
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