There is now accumulating evidence that the striatal complex in its two major components, the dorsal striatum and the nucleus accumbens, contributes to spatial memory. However, the possibility that different striatal subregions might modulate specific aspects of spatial navigation has not been completely elucidated. Therefore, in this study, two different learning procedures were used to determine whether the two striatal components could be distinguished on the basis of their involvement in spatial learning using different frames of reference: allocentric and egocentric. The task used involved the detection of a spatial change in the configuration of four objects placed in an arena, after the mice had had the opportunity to experience the objects in a constant position for three previous sessions. In the first part of the study we investigated whether changes in the place where the animals were introduced in, to the arena during habituation and testing could induce a preferential use of an egocentric or an allocentric frame of reference. In the second part of the study we performed focal injections of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors' antagonist, AP-5, within the two subregions immediately after training. The results indicate that using the two behavioral procedures, the animals rely on an egocentric and an allocentric spatial frame of reference. Furthermore, they demonstrate that AP-5 (37.5, 75, and 150 ng/side) injections into the dorsal striatum selectively impaired consolidation of spatial information in the egocentric but not in the allocentric procedure. Intra-accumbens AP-5 administration, instead, impaired animals trained using both procedures.
A study on the role of the dorsal striatum and the nucleus accumbens in allocentric and egocentric spatial memory consolidation / E., De Leonibus; Oliverio, Alberto; Mele, Andrea. - In: LEARNING & MEMORY. - ISSN 1072-0502. - STAMPA. - 12:5(2005), pp. 491-503. [10.1101/lm.94805]