The effects of pentobarbital upon auditory and visual thresholds in the baboon

R. D. Hienz, S. E. Lukas, J. V. Brady

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Adult male baboons were trained to perform a reaction time procedure, which required holding a lever depressed for varying time intervals and releasing it during a 1.5 sec test stimulus to receive food. The test stimulus was a 16 kHz tone for auditory threshold testing, and a white light for visual threshold testing. Stimulus intensities were randomly varied to determine detection thresholds, and the latency of each correct lever release was recorded as a measure of reaction time. Acute, IM injections of pentobarbital (1.0 to 17.0 mg/kg) were given at the beginning of 2-hr experimental sessions. Pentobarbital elevated the absolute visual threshold and increased both auditory and visual reaction times in a dose-related manner. Two of three baboons showed reaction time and visual threshold decrements at pentobarbital doses which produced no change in absolute auditory thresholds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)799-805
Number of pages7
JournalPharmacology, Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1981


  • Auditory threshold
  • Pentobarbital
  • Primates
  • Reaction time
  • Visual threshold

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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