Several arylcyclohexylamines and opioid benzomorphans that bind to phencyclidine (PCP) receptors were studied for their effects on punished and unpunished responding maintained under fixed-interval schedules of food presentation. All of these drugs increased both punished and unpunished responding, although higher doses decreased responding. The order of potency for increasing punished responding was MK-801 [(+)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzoa(a,d)-cyclohepten-5,1 0-imine] greater than [1-[1-(2-thienyl)cyclohexyl]piperidine] = PCP greater than (+)-N-allylnormetazocine = (-)-N-allynormetazocine. There was a high correlation (0.95) between the relative potency of these drugs in increasing punished responding and their relative affinity for PCP receptors. Because some of these drugs also bind to sigma receptors, drugs with a high affinity for sigma receptors, such as haloperidol, BD 737 [1S,2R-(-)-cis-N-[2-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)ethyl]-N- methyl-2-(1-pyrrolidinyl) cyclohexylamine] and (+)-3-(3-hydroxyphenyl)-N-(1-propyl)piperidine, were also studied for their effects on punished and unpunished responding. These drugs produced only rate-decreasing effects. The correlation between the relative potency of drugs in increasing punished responding and their relative affinity for sigma receptors was low (-0.19). These data suggest that the PCP receptor is involved in some drug-induced increases in punished responding.