Ondansetron interferes with unconditioned lying-on belly and acquisition of conditioned gaping induced by LiCl as models of nausea-induced behaviors in rats

Physiol Behav. 2012 Feb 1;105(3):856-60. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2011.10.017. Epub 2011 Oct 25.


Rats selectively display conditioned gaping reactions when re-exposed to flavours previously paired with nausea-inducing treatments and drugs that reduce nausea also reduce these reactions, suggesting that they represent a model of nausea-induced behavior in rats. However, these reactions rely upon learning, they are not unconditional malaise-induced reactions. Here we compared the effectiveness of the anti-nausea drug, ondansetron (OND) to interfere with the establishment of conditioned gaping reactions and the unconditional malaise-induced reaction of lying on belly (LOB). Pretreatment with OND significantly reduced both LiCl-induced LOB and conditioned gaping reactions, without modifying conditioned taste avoidance. The frequency of gaping and duration of LOB were highly correlated. These results provide additional support for the validity of the conditioned gaping model as a rodent model of nausea-induced behavior.

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Antiemetics / therapeutic use*
  • Avoidance Learning / drug effects
  • Conditioning, Classical / drug effects*
  • Conditioning, Classical / physiology
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Lithium Chloride / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Nausea / chemically induced*
  • Nausea / drug therapy*
  • Ondansetron / therapeutic use*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Saccharin / administration & dosage
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Taste / drug effects
  • Time Factors
  • Video Recording


  • Antiemetics
  • Ondansetron
  • Saccharin
  • Lithium Chloride