Blockade of Hippocampal Nicotinic Receptors Impairs Working Memory but Not Reference Memory in Rats

Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 1993 May;45(1):89-93. doi: 10.1016/0091-3057(93)90091-7.


In a three-panel runway task, intrahippocampal injection of the nicotinic receptor antagonist, mecamylamine (10 and 18 micrograms/side), significantly increased the number of errors (attempts to pass through two incorrect panels of the three panel-gates at four choice points) in a test of working memory. This increase in errors also occurred after rats were given IP mecamylamine (10 mg/kg). Mecamylamine did not affect the number of errors in a test of reference memory whether it was given at doses up to 18 micrograms/side intrahippocampally or up to 10 mg/kg IP. These results suggest that mechanisms mediated by hippocampal nicotinic receptors play a role in working memory but not in reference memory.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Hippocampus / drug effects
  • Hippocampus / physiology*
  • Injections
  • Male
  • Mecamylamine / pharmacology
  • Memory / drug effects*
  • Memory, Short-Term / drug effects*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Receptors, Nicotinic / drug effects*


  • Receptors, Nicotinic
  • Mecamylamine