Effects of intermittent electric shock on penile reflexes of male rats

Benjamin Hart, Vicki Odell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The effects of mildly painful electric shock in facilitating copulatory responses of male rats is well established. It is also well established that the intensity of some spinal reflexes such as the flexion reflex can be enhanced by electric shock. This study examined the effects of the electrical shock on the spinal timing mechanism governing the occurrence of penile reflexes. Intermittent electric shock applied to the flank region of spinal male rats reduced the intervals between the clusters of penile reflexes about 30%. Interestingly, this is approximately the same magnitude by which flank shock facilitates sexual responding in spinally intact animals. The type of reflex plasticity revealed by the shock treatment of spinal rats is different than that reported previously in experiments on reflex sensitization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)394-398
Number of pages5
JournalBehavioral and Neural Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 1980

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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