The inbred Balb/c mouse strain was more sensitive than the outbred NIH Swiss mouse to flurazepam's ability to antagonize electrically precipitated seizures. In prior work, a reduction in flurazepam's antiseizure efficacy was not observed 24h after forcing Balb/c mice to swim for up to 10 min in ambient temperature water. Thus, we wondered if a stress-induced reduction would be observed after forcing mice to swim for up to 10 min in cold (6 degrees C) water, a more severe stress. The current data show that 24 h after exposure to this stress, the ability of flurazepam to raise the threshold voltage for the elicitation of tonic hindlimb extension in the Balb/c mouse strain was reduced. The genetically inbred Balb/c mouse strain is emerging as an interesting animal model in which to study interactions of stress and genetic factors that affect endogenous neurotransmission mediated by l-glutamate and GABA at the NMDA and GABA(A) receptor complexes, respectively.