Differential effects of two ways of devaluing the unconditioned stimulus after Pavlovian appetitive conditioning

J Exp Psychol Anim Behav Process. 1979 Jan;5(1):65-78. doi: 10.1037//0097-7403.5.1.65.


Three experiments with rat subjects investigated the effects of two methods of devaluing a food unconditioned stimulus (US) after pairings of an auditory conditioned stimulus (CS) with that US. Experiment 1 found no effect of postconditioning pairings of the food US with lithium chloride (LiCl) on general activity to a tone CS, even though those pairings substantially reduced food consumption. Experiments 2 and 3 compared the effects on conditioned responding of postconditioning pairings of food with LiCl and with high-speed rotation. In these experiments the general activity measure was supplemented by a detailed visual analysis of the rats' behavior. Experiment 2 found that food-rotation pairings had larger effects than food-LiCl pairings on general activity responding and on two detailed behavioral measures but that food-LiCl pairings had larger effects on food consumption and on one behavioral measure. Experiment 3 replicated the findings of Experiment 2 and found that the ability of the CS to serve as a reinforcer for second-order conditioning after US devaluation was reduced more by food-LiCl pairings.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Appetitive Behavior*
  • Association Learning
  • Auditory Perception
  • Avoidance Learning
  • Conditioning, Classical*
  • Extinction, Psychological
  • Lithium / poisoning
  • Male
  • Rats


  • Lithium