Author(s): Bechara A, Nader K, van der Kooy D
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Abstract In drug-naive rats, the rewarding effects of morphine are blocked by lesions of the tegmental pedunculopontine nucleus (TPP), but not by neuroleptics. In dependent rats (chronically treated with morphine), morphine reward is blocked by neuroleptics, but not by TPP lesions. Just as this activation of opiate receptors in naive versus dependent rats produces different mechanisms of reward, this study concludes that reduced opioid activity on these opiate receptors produces different mechanisms of aversion. Neuroleptics blocked the conditioned place aversions produced by naloxone and spontaneous withdrawal in morphine dependent, but not naive, rats, without attenuating the somatic withdrawal syndrome induced by naloxone in dependent rats. The researchers suggest that the aversive effects of endogenous opioid withdrawal in naive rats are mediated by different neural substrates than the aversive effects of exogenous opioid withdrawal in dependent rats.
This article was published in Behav Neurosci
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy