Sensitization to cocaine after a single intra-cerebral injection of orphanin FQ/nociceptin.

TitleSensitization to cocaine after a single intra-cerebral injection of orphanin FQ/nociceptin.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2002
AuthorsNarayanan, S, Lutfy K, Maidment N
JournalBehavioural brain research
Date Published2002 Apr 1
KeywordsAnimals, Cocaine, Dopamine, Dopamine Uptake Inhibitors, Drug Tolerance, Injections, Injections, Intraperitoneal, Limbic System, Male, Neostriatum, Neural Pathways, Opioid Peptides, Rats, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Receptors, Opioid, substantia nigra, Ventral Tegmental Area

Orphanin FQ/nociceptin (OFQ/N) has been shown to modulate mesolimbic dopaminergic neurotransmission. Repeated administration of OFQ/N into the ventral tegmental area results in a sensitized locomotor response to subsequent peripheral cocaine administration. The aim of the present study was to examine the potential for OFQ/N to produce a sensitized locomotor response to cocaine after a single intra-VTA administration and to determine if this effect of OFQ/N extrapolates to other points along the mesolimbic or nigrostriatal dopaminergic axes. Bilateral administration of OFQ/N (30 microg/side) into the VTA on day 1 to male Sprague--Dawley rats resulted in an enhanced locomotor response to cocaine (10 mg/kg i.p) administered on day 2. However, OFQ/N (3, 10 and 30 microg per side) administered on day 2, 5 mins prior to the administration of cocaine (10 mg/kg i.p), in animals treated with aCSF or OFQ/N on day 1, similarly blocked the action of cocaine, suggesting that the sensitized response was not due to tolerance to the effect of endogenously released OFQ/N. The administration of OFQ/N into the substantia nigra or nucleus accumbens failed to produce a significant sensitized response to a cocaine challenge 24 h later. A significant increase in cocaine stimulated locomotor response on day 2 was observed after injection of OFQ/N into the striatum on day 1. These results demonstrate the ability of a single intra-VTA or intra-striatal administration of OFQ/N to produce increases in the sensitivity to cocaine and may indicate a role for endogenous OFQ/N systems in regulating responses to psychostimulant drugs.

Alternate JournalBehav. Brain Res.