Psychology, Department of


Document Type


Date of this Version

September 2003


Published in Behavioural Pharmacology, 14, 191–198. Published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; copyright © 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Used by permission.


Three experiments examined the effects of chronic preexposure to caffeine on the subsequent conditioned and unconditioned locomotor activating effects of nicotine or amphetamine in rats. Rats were given daily intraperitoneal injections of caffeine anhydrous (0, 10 or 30 mg/kg base) for 30 days. Conditioning (environment-drug pairings) began after the last day of caffeine pre-exposure. Preexposure to 30 mg/kg of caffeine enhanced the acute and chronic locomotor effects of amphetamine (0.5 mg/kg). A similar enhancement of activity was not seen with the high (0.421 mg/kg base) or low dose (0.175 mg/kg) of nicotine. In a drug-free test, the distinct environment paired with amphetamine and the high dose of nicotine evoked increases in activity relative to controls. Caffeine pre-exposure did not affect expression of this conditioned hyperactivity. These effects of caffeine pre-exposure on amphetamine-induced activity could not be attributed to non-specific effects of caffeine.