Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Craig H. Kinsley


Morphine disrupts full parental behavior (FPB) in adult rats when administered into the preoptic area; effects are reversed with naloxone. The current study emphasizes central administration of morphine into the preoptic area and effects on parental behavior in juveniles and possible naloxone blockade. In Experiment 1, juveniles outfitted with cannulae assemblies aimed at the preoptic region were administered a regimen of morphine, naloxone, or saline, and 30 minutes later were exposed to neonates. Behavior was scored for 1 hour and animals were considered parental if they responded with FPB for 2 consecutive days. Saline and naloxone groups responded to the pups; the morphine groups did not. Experiment 2 treated already parentally behaving juveniles with the same regimen. Again, saline and naloxone groups responded to the pups, whereas morphine groups did not. These data suggest that parental behavior in juveniles is regulated by endogenous opioid systems acting on the preoptic region.

Included in

Psychology Commons