Memory enhancement produced by post-training exposure to sucrose-conditioned cues
A number of aversive and appetitive unconditioned stimuli (such as shock and food) are known to produce memory enhancement when they occur during the post-training period. Post-training exposure to conditioned aversive stimuli has also been shown to enhance memory consolidation processes. The present study shows for the first time that post-training exposure to conditioned stimuli previously paired with consumption of a sucrose solution also enhances memory consolidation. Male Long Evans rats were trained on a one-session conditioned cue preference (CCP) task on a radial arm maze. Immediately or 2 hours after training, rats consumed a sucrose solution or were exposed to cues previously paired with consumption of sucrose or cues previously paired with water. Twenty-four hours later, the rats were tested for a CCP. Immediate, but not delayed, post-training consumption of sucrose enhanced memory for the CCP. Immediate, but not delayed, post-training exposure to cues previously paired with sucrose, but not with water, also enhanced CCP memory. The possibility that rewarding and aversive conditioned stimuli affect memory by a common physiological process is discussed.