Differential conditioned place preference responses to endomorphin-1 and endomorphin-2 microinjected into the posterior nucleus accumbens shell and ventral tegmental area in the rat.

Abstract

An unbiased conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm was used to evaluate the reward effects of endogenous mu-opioid receptor ligands endomorphin-1 (EM-1) and endomorphin-2 (EM-2) from the mesolimbic posterior nucleus accumbens (Acb) shell and the ventral tegmental area (VTA) in CD rats. EM-1 (1.6-8.1 nmol) microinjected into posterior Acb shell produced CPP, whereas EM-2 (8.7-17.5 nmol) given into the same Acb shell produced conditioned place aversion (CPA). EM-1 (1.6-16.3 nmol) microinjected into the VTA produced CPP, whereas EM-2 (8.7 and 17.5 nmol) given into the same VTA site did not produce any effect, but at a high dose (35 nmol) produced CPP. EM-1 (3.3 nmol) or EM-2 (17.5 nmol) microinjected into the nigrostriatal substantia nigra was not significantly different from vehicle-injected groups. D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH(2) (CTOP) at 94.13 pmol or 3-methoxynaltrexone at 0.64 pmol microinjected into the posterior Acb shell blocked EM-1-induced CPP and EM-2-induced CPA. At a higher dose, CTOP (941.3 pmol) and 3-methoxynaltrexone (6.4 pmol) produced CPA and CPP, respectively. Coadministration with antiserum against dynorphin A(1-17) (Dyn) (10 microg) microinjected into the posterior Acb shell blocked EM-2-induced CPA. However, it did not affect EM-1-induced CPP. It is concluded that EM-1 and EM-2 produce site-dependent CPP and CPA, respectively, by stimulation of different subtypes of mu-opioid-receptors; stimulation of one subtype of mu-opioid-receptor at the posterior Acb shell and VTA by EM-1 induces CPP, whereas stimulation of another subtype of mu-opioid receptor at the posterior Acb shell, but not the VTA, by EM-2 induces the release of Dyn to produce CPA.

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