Acute locomotor responses to cocaine in adolescents vs. adults from four divergent inbred mouse strains

J. A. Zombeck, S. P. Swearingen, J. S. Rhodes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Growing evidence suggests that adolescent mice display differential sensitivity to the acute locomotor activating effects of cocaine as compared to adults, but the direction of the difference varies across studies and the reasons are not clear. Few studies have directly examined genetic contributions to age differences in locomotor stimulation from cocaine. The goal of this study was to determine the extent to which reduced stimulation in C57BL/6J adolescents as compared to adults generalizes to other strains. Therefore, we examined male and female mice from four genetically divergent inbred stains (BALB/cByJ, C57BL/6J, DBA/2J and FVB/NJ) at two ages, postnatal day 30 and postnatal day 65. Mice received either saline or cocaine (15 or 30 mg/kg), and then immediately were placed back into their home cages. Locomotor activity was recorded continuously in the home cage by video tracking. Adolescents displayed reduced stimulation as compared to adults for C57BL/6J, BALB/cByJ and female FVB/NJ mice. No age differences were observed for DBA/2J or male FVB/NJ. No main effects of sex were observed. Strain differences in pharmacokinetics, neural development or physiology could contribute to the observed differences between ages across strains. Future comparative studies could discover biological differences between strains that explain age differences in cocaine sensitivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)892-898
Number of pages7
JournalGenes, Brain and Behavior
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 2010


  • BALB/cByJ
  • Behavior genetics
  • C57BL/6J
  • DBA/2J
  • FVB/NJ
  • Heritability
  • Locomotor stimulation
  • Mice
  • Mouse phenome database
  • Psychostimulant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Neurology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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