Role of Hippocampus in Contextual Fear COnditioning

Filip van den Bergh F.S.vandenBergh at students.fss.uu.nl
Wed Dec 13 15:15:02 EST 2000

I was wondering what solutions readers of this newsgroup found on the
inconsistent findings on the function of the hippocampus in contextual fear
conditioning. I'm hoping this is a correct NG to post this.
Kim and Fanselow (1993) found that a damaged hippocampus does not inhibit
unimodal fear conditioning measured by freezing, but it does inhibit
contextual fear conditioning measured by freezing. McNish, Gewirtz and Davis
(1997) found that the hippocampus inhibits freezing, but not
fear-potentiated startle, and using this information they found that animals
with a damaged hippocampus can still associate fear with a specific context.
This can be explained by stating that the lesioned hippocampus somehow
inhibits the freeze response. This however, is not consistent with Kim and
Fanselow's results, as they did find freezing to a unimodal cue in animals
with a damaged hippocampus.
I read the current articles, but I was wondering if anybody had some
revolutionary idea.

Thanks in advance,
Filip van den Bergh

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