Effects of desipramine and fluvoxamine on timing behaviour investigated with the fixed-interval peak procedure and the interval bisection task

M. Y. Ho, S. S.A. Al-Zahrani, D. N. Velazquez Martinez, M. Lopez Cabrera, C. M. Bradshaw*, E. Szabadi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Acute treatment with antidepressant drugs is known to increase the mean interresponse time (IRT) in the IRT>72-s schedule of reinforcement. In order to examine the possibility that this effect may reflect an action of the antidepressants on timing processes, we tested the effects of two antidepressants, desipramine and fluvoxamine, on behaviour maintained under two other timing schedules in rats. In the fixed-interval peak procedure (fixed-interval 30-s), acute treatment with desipramine (8 mg kg-1) reduced response rate, whereas acute treatment with fluvoxamine (8 mg kg-1) increased it. Neither drug significantly altered the time to attainment of peak response rate or the Weber fraction. In the interval bisection task (standard durations 2 s and 8 s), the bisection point was not significantly altered by acute treatment with either drug. Chronic treatment with desipramine (8 mg kg-1 b.d.) had no effect on any of the indices of timing under either schedule. Chronic treatment with fluvoxamine (8 mg kg-1 b.d.) reduced the time to attainment of peak response rate but had no effect on the Weber fraction under the fixed-interval peak procedure, and did not alter the bisection point or Weber fraction under the interval bisection procedure. The failure of desipramine and fluvoxamine to increase the time to peak response rate or the bisection point at doses that significantly altered operant response rate suggests that the effect of these drugs on IRT schedule performance is unlikely to reflect an interaction with timing processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)274-284
Number of pages11
JournalPsychopharmacology
Volume125
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • antidepressants
  • desipramine
  • fixed-interval peak procedure
  • fluvoxamine
  • interval bisection task
  • rat
  • timing

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