Effects of the potassium channel blockers, apamin and 4-aminopyridine, on scopolamine-induced deficits in the delayed matching to position task in rats: a comparison with the cholinesterase inhibitor E2020

Psychopharmacology (Berl). 1998 Feb;135(3):242-55. doi: 10.1007/s002130050506.


The effects of the muscarinic antagonists, scopolamine HBr and MeBr, a cholinesterase inhibitor, E2020, and K+ channel blockers, 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) and apamin, on the performance of rats in a delayed matching to position (DMTP) task were examined. The percentage of correct choices (choice accuracy), number of trials completed and intertrial intervals were measured. Discriminability and response bias were also calculated, using signal detection analysis. Scopolamine HBr (0.1 mg/kg), but not scopolamine MeBr (0.1 mg/kg), significantly and consistently reduced the choice accuracy and discriminability, but neither affected the other measurements. E2020 (0.03-1.0 mg/kg) had no effect on the baseline performance in the DMTP task, but at 1.0 mg/kg, it significantly attenuated the deficits in choice accuracy induced by scopolamine. 4-AP (0.001-0.1 mg/kg) had no effect on either baseline performance or deficits induced by scopolamine. Apamin (0.1-0.4 mg/kg) had no effect on choice accuracy and discriminability. Apamin also failed to attenuate the scopolamine-induced deficits. When administered in combination with scopolamine, apamin at 0.4 mg/kg significantly decreased the number of trials completed and increased the intertrial interval relative to that of the control group. Taken together, these results demonstrate that K+ channel blockers (4-AP and apamin), unlike a cholinesterase inhibitor (E2020), fail to reverse the scopolamine-induced deficits in the DMTP task.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • 4-Aminopyridine / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Apamin / pharmacology*
  • Choice Behavior / drug effects
  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Conditioning, Operant / drug effects
  • Donepezil
  • Indans / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Muscarinic Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Piperidines / pharmacology*
  • Potassium Channel Blockers*
  • Potassium Channels / drug effects
  • Potassium Channels / metabolism
  • Psychomotor Performance / drug effects*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Reaction Time / drug effects
  • Scopolamine / pharmacology*


  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors
  • Indans
  • Muscarinic Antagonists
  • Piperidines
  • Potassium Channel Blockers
  • Potassium Channels
  • Apamin
  • Donepezil
  • 4-Aminopyridine
  • Scopolamine