Antagonizing Dorsal Hippocampal Dopamine D1-type Receptors Affects Social Learning and Social Interactions but not Food Intake in Male and Female Mice
Dopamine (DA) is involved in many motivationally relevant behaviors, including social learning, feeding, and social interactions. With systemic treatments, our lab has previously found an involvement of DA D1-type receptors in the social transmission of food preferences (STFP; Choleris et al., 2011), however, the site(s) of action remain unknown. The ventral tegmental area has dopaminergic projections to the hippocampus—a site important for social learning in the STFP. In this study, we microinfused the DA D1-type receptor antagonist SCH23390 into the dorsal hippocampus of adult male and female mice. We found that SCH23390 blocked social learning in both male and female mice without influencing total food intake. While there was a sex-specific effect of SCH23390 on certain social behaviors, there was no significant influence of drug treatment on oronasal investigation, or olfactory discrimination, for either sex. Thus, hippocampal DA D1-type receptors may play an important role in the ‘social brain’.