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Neural Plasticity
Volume 11, Issue 3-4, Pages 205-216

Strains of Rodents and the Pharmacology of Learning and Memory

1CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Laboratory of Psychobiology and Psychopharmacology, Rome, Italy
2IRCCS S. Lucia Foundation, 306 Via Ardeatina, Rome 00179, Italy

Copyright © 2004 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Mendelian genetic tools have extensively been used to improve the description of the pharmacological mechanisms involved in learning and memory. The first part of this short review describes experiments involving the bidirectional selection of rats or mice for extreme behavioral characteristics or for sensitivity to pharmacological treatments. The second part focuses specifically on inbreeding. In conclusion, the advantages and the limits of a Mendelian pharmacogenetic approach of learning and memory are discussed.