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Optogenetic dissection of basolateral amygdala contributions to intertemporal choice in young and aged rats

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Cite this article as: eLife 2019;8:e46174 doi: 10.7554/eLife.46174

Abstract

Across species, aging is associated with an increased ability to choose delayed over immediate gratification. These experiments used young and aged rats to test the role of the basolateral amygdala (BLA) in intertemporal decision making. An optogenetic approach was used to inactivate the BLA in young and aged rats at discrete time points during choices between levers that yielded a small, immediate vs. a large, delayed food reward. BLA inactivation just prior to decisions attenuated impulsive choice in both young and aged rats. In contrast, inactivation during receipt of the small, immediate reward increased impulsive choice in young rats but had no effect in aged rats. BLA inactivation during the delay or intertrial interval had no effect at either age. These data demonstrate that the BLA plays multiple, temporally distinct roles during intertemporal choice, and show that the contribution of BLA to choice behavior changes across the lifespan.

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Caesar M Hernandez

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0001-9690-5119
  2. Caitlin A Orsini

    Department of Psychiatry, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Chase C Labiste

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  4. Alexa-Rae Wheeler

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  5. Tyler W Ten Eyck

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  6. Matthew M Bruner

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  7. Todd J Sahagian

    Department of Pharmacodynamics, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  8. Scott W Harden

    Department of Pharmacodynamics, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-0757-1979
  9. Charles J Frazier

    Department of Pharmacodynamics, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  10. Barry Setlow

    Department of Psychiatry, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  11. Jennifer L Bizon

    Department of Neuroscience, University of Florida, Gainesville, United States
    For correspondence
    bizonj@ufl.edu
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-9517-5844

Funding

National Institutes of Health (R01AG029421)

  • Jennifer L Bizon

McKnight Brain Research Foundation

  • Jennifer L Bizon

McKnight Foundation

  • Caesar M Hernandez

Thomas H. Maren Foundation

  • Caitlin A Orsini

National Institutes of Health (RF1AG060778)

  • Charles J Frazier
  • Barry Setlow
  • Jennifer L Bizon

National Institutes of Health (K99DA041493)

  • Caitlin A Orsini

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Animal experimentation: This research was conducted in accordance with the rules and regulations of the University of Florida Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (protocol number 201604961) and National Institutes of Health guidelines.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Geoffrey Schoenbaum, National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health, United States

Publication history

  1. Received: February 18, 2019
  2. Accepted: April 23, 2019
  3. Accepted Manuscript published: April 24, 2019 (version 1)
  4. Version of Record published: May 22, 2019 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2019, Hernandez et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

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