Copulation is reactivated by bromocriptine in male rats after reaching sexual satiety with a same sexual mate

Physiol Behav. 2015 Nov 1;151:551-6. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2015.08.029. Epub 2015 Aug 28.


Male sexual satiety has been associated with a decrease in dopamine levels. Spontaneous recovery of copulatory behavior begins at least 72 h after sexual satiety is reached or in the condition in which a sexually-satiated male is exposed to a new receptive female distinct from the one with which sexual satiety was reached. The aim of the present study was to explore whether dopaminergic activation by bromocriptine (BrCr) can reactivate copulatory behavior with the same sexual mate immediately after sexual satiety is reached. Male rats were divided into three groups exposed to one of the following three conditions: 1) administration of 2 mg/kgs.c. of BrCr and exposure to the same female with whom sexual satiety was previously reached; 2) administration of 0.3 mLs.c. of the vehicle solution with exposure to the same female with whom sexual satiety was reached; and, 3) exposure to a new receptive female after sexual satiety was reached. Results showed that BrCr significantly reactivated copulatory capability in sexually-satiated males with the same receptive female. In contrast, no males in the vehicle group ejaculated with the same female after reaching sexual exhaustion. Copulation was reactivated by BrCr in a way similar to that observed in untreated males exposed to a new receptive female (i.e., the Coolidge effect). The reversal of sexual satiety in the males treated with BrCr could be explained by its action on D2 family receptors, which promotes a reactivation of sexual motivation at a level sufficient to allow renewed copulation with the same female mate.

Keywords: Bromocriptine; Coolidge effect; D2 receptors; Dopamine; Male sexual behavior; Sexual satiety.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bromocriptine / pharmacology*
  • Copulation / drug effects*
  • Copulation / physiology
  • Dopamine Agonists / pharmacology*
  • Ejaculation / drug effects
  • Ejaculation / physiology
  • Male
  • Random Allocation
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2 / metabolism
  • Satiation / drug effects*
  • Satiation / physiology
  • Time Factors


  • DRD2 protein, rat
  • Dopamine Agonists
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2
  • Bromocriptine