Retrieval Failure Induced by Electroconvulsive Shock: Reversal with Dissimilar Training and Recovery Agents

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Science  18 Aug 1972:
Vol. 177, Issue 4049, pp. 628-630
DOI: 10.1126/science.177.4049.628


Amnesia was obtained following electroconvulsive shock in rats trained at one-trial passive avoidance of immersion in ice water. Avoidance behavior was restored when noncontingent foot shock was administered outside the training apparatus. The qualitative differences between ice water and foot shock demonstrate that the agent inducing recovery of memory need not be physically similar to the reinforcer used during training. These findings are interpreted as supporting a retrieval failure view of experimental amnesia.

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