The effects of subcutaneous (SC) administration of D-Ala2-Met5-enkephalinamide (DAME) (1, 10 and 100 micrograms/kg), synthetic analog of Met-enkephalin, on the acquisition of ethanol preference were studied in male Wistar rats. Under our procedural conditions, rats develop ethanol preference by a forced ethanol drinking session (conditioning session). Preconditioning administration of DAME (100 micrograms/kg) induced a reduction in ethanol consumption on the day of treatment and on subsequent testing days, but did not reliably modify later ethanol preference. Postconditioning administration of DAME (1, 10 and 100 micrograms/kg) markedly impaired the acquisition of ethanol preference. However, under the same schedule of treatment, DAME failed to affect subsequent rats' sucrose preference. These results suggest that, when administered after rats' first exposure to ethanol, DAME could interfere either with the reinforcement mechanisms of ethanol consumption induced by its intake, or with the storage of the information related to the ethanol incentive value.