Hippocampal activity and brainstem reward-aversion loci

Aryeh Routtenberg*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Recorded hippocampal activity from macroelectrodes while electrical stimulation was applied to subcortical regions in 59 paralyzed & locally anesthetized male albino rats. When a characteristic hippocampal response to the subcortical stimulation was observed, the stimulating electrode was cemented to the skull and S recovered from paralysis. Behavioral testing of the stimulation for rewarding and aversive effects was carried out using both a tilt cage and bar-pressing situation. Rewarding brainstem sites associated with extrapyramidal structures, aversive sites within central gray, and neutral sites in reticular and dorsal, deep, and ventral tegmental nuclei produced theta activity in hippocampus with aversive stimulation producing the highest theta frequencies (5-6 Hz.). It is concluded that brainstem extrapyramidal reward sites influence hippocampus similar to that observed with limbic-forebrain reward loci. (23 ref.) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-170
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Comparative and Physiological Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 1970


  • brainstem reward-aversion loci, hippocampal activity, rat
  • stimulation of subcortical regions &

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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