Neurotensin self-injection in the ventral tegmental area

Paul W. Glimcher, Adrienne A. Giovino, Bartley G. Hoebel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Earlier work with the conditioned place-preference paradigm suggested that neurotensin (NT) acts as a behavioral reinforcer when microinjected into the ventral tegmental area (VTA) of the midbrain. We report here that animals will perform an operant task to obtain microinfusions of NT into the VTA. Rats reliably pressed a lever to obtain NT infusions while neglecting an identical but inactive lever. Substitution of saline for NT initiated response extinction; following the reintroduction of NT, reliable responding resumed. These results extend earlier work suggesting that NT in the VTA can be a positive reinforcer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-150
Number of pages4
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 10 1987


  • Neurotensin
  • Reward
  • Self-injection
  • Ventral tegmental area

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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