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Neurokinin-1 receptor-expressing neurons in the amygdala modulate morphine reward and anxiety behaviors in the mouse

Gadd, CA; Murtra, P; De Felipe, C; Hunt, SP; (2003) Neurokinin-1 receptor-expressing neurons in the amygdala modulate morphine reward and anxiety behaviors in the mouse. J NEUROSCI , 23 (23) 8271 - 8280.

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Abstract

Mice lacking the neurokinin-1 (NK1) receptor, the preferred receptor for the neuropeptide substance P (SP), do not show many of the behaviors associated with morphine reward. To identify the areas of the brain that might contribute to this effect, we assessed the behavioral effects of ablation of neurons expressing the NK1 receptor in specific regions of the mouse brain using the neurotoxin substance P-saporin. In a preliminary investigation, bilateral ablation of these neurons from the amygdala, but not the nucleus accumbens and dorsomedial caudate putamen, brought about reductions in morphine reward behavior. Subsequently, the effect of ablation of these neurons in the amygdala on anxiety behavior was assessed using the elevated plus maze (EPM), before conditioned place preference (CPP), and locomotor responses to morphine were measured. Loss of NK1 receptor-expressing neurons in the amygdala caused an increase in anxiety-like behavior on the EPM. It also brought about a reduction in morphine CPP scores and the stimulant effect of acute morphine administration relative to saline controls, without affecting CPP to cocaine. NK1 receptor-expressing neurons in the mouse amygdala therefore modulate morphine reward behaviors. These observations mirror those observed in NK1 receptor knock-out (NK1-/-) mice and suggest that the amygdala is an important area for the effects of SP and the NK1 receptor in the motivational properties of opiates, as well as the control of behaviors related to anxiety.

Type: Article
Title: Neurokinin-1 receptor-expressing neurons in the amygdala modulate morphine reward and anxiety behaviors in the mouse
Keywords: neurokinin-1 receptor, substance P, substance P-saporin, morphine, reward, conditioned place preference, anxiety, elevated plus maze, amygdala, nucleus accumbens, CONDITIONED PLACE PREFERENCE, SUBSTANCE-P RECEPTOR, PEDUNCULOPONTINE TEGMENTAL NUCLEUS, CB1 CANNABINOID RECEPTORS, HEROIN-SEEKING BEHAVIOR, RAT CENTRAL NUCLEUS, BASOLATERAL AMYGDALA, LOCUS-COERULEUS, BASALIS MAGNOCELLULARIS, MICE LACKING
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Cell and Developmental Biology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/139401
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