Domestication alters 5-HT1A receptor binding in rat brain

Ronald P. Hammer, Kevin M. Hori, Robert J. Blanchard, D. Caroline Blanchard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Serotonin-1A receptor binding density was compared in the brain of wild and domesticated adult male Rattus norvegicus using in vitro receptor autoradiography of [3H]8-hydroxy-2-[n-dipropylamino]tetraline (DPAT). While both groups exhibited similar patterns of labeling, [3H]DPAT binding density was significantly (p ≤ 0.05) lower in the median raphe nucleus and greater in superficial entorhinal cortex and rostral dentate gyrus of domesticated compared to wild rats. The results suggest that specific serotonergic circuits from the median raphe nucleus to the entorhinal and hippocampal regions might be involved in regulation of the defensive behaviors that differ profoundly between wild and domesticated rats. The relationship of these putative differences to behavioral disorders such as anxiety and depression in humans is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-28
Number of pages4
JournalPharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 1992


  • 5-HT
  • Defensive behavior
  • Domestication
  • Hippocampus
  • Median raphe nucleus
  • Serotonin
  • Wild rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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