C57BL/6NNia and autoimmune NZB/B1NJ mice aged 12-14 months were tested for acquisition and retention of an active avoidance response following vehicle or flumazenil (40 mg/kg), a benzodiazepine antagonist. Acquisition and retention performance was improved in flumazenil-treated mice when compared with vehicle-treated mice, although the degree of improvement varied with the level of performance in vehicle-treated mice of each strain. The NZB/B1NJ mice, which generally performed more poorly than the C57BL/6NNia mice, showed the greater improvements following flumazenil. These results suggest that antagonism of benzodiazepine receptors leads to improved learning and/or memory performance in mice with spontaneous age-associated deficits.
- Avoidance learning
- Benzodiazepine receptor antagonist
- C57BL/6NNia mice
- Cognitive decline
- NZB/B1NJ mice