Involvement of rodent prefrontal cortex subregions in strategy switching

Behav Neurosci. 1999 Feb;113(1):32-41. doi: 10.1037//0735-7044.113.1.32.


The present study examined whether inactivation of the prelimbic-infralimbic areas or the dorsal anterior cingulate area impairs strategy switching in the cheeseboard task. After implantation of a cannula aimed at either the prelimbic-infralimbic or dorsal anterior cingulate areas, all rats were tested in a spatial and a visual-cued version of the task. Some of the rats received the spatial version first, followed by the visual-cued version. The procedure for the other rats was reversed. Infusions of 2% tetracaine into the prelimbic-infralimbic or dorsal anterior cingulate areas did not impair acquisition of the spatial or visual-cued versions. However, inactivation of the prelimbic-infralimbic areas, but not the dorsal anterior cingulate area, impaired learning when rats were switched from one version to the other. These findings suggest that the prelimbic-infralimbic areas are involved in switching to new behavior-guiding strategies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Appetitive Behavior / physiology*
  • Attention / physiology*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Cues
  • Gyrus Cinguli / physiology
  • Limbic System / physiology
  • Male
  • Orientation / physiology*
  • Prefrontal Cortex / physiology*
  • Problem Solving / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Long-Evans
  • Visual Perception / physiology