Region specific expression of NMDA receptor NR1 subunit mRNA in hypothalamus and pons following chronic morphine treatment

Hong Zhu, Choon Gon Jang, Tangeng Ma, Seikwan Oh, Robin W. Rockhold, Ing K. Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

The NMDA receptor has been implicated in opioid tolerance and physical dependence. Using in situ hybridization techniques, the effects of chronic morphine treatment on the expression of mRNAs encoding the NMDA receptor subunits NR1, NR2A, and NR2B were investigated. A significant increase in the level of the NR1 subunit mRNA was found in the locus coeruleus and the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus following 3 days of intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) morphine infusion (26 nmol μl-1 h-1) through osmotic minipumps. No changes were detected in expression of the NR1 mRNA in the frontal cortex, caudate-putamen, nucleus accumbens, amygdala, CA1, CA2, and the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus, and in the central grey after morphine treatment. The expression of NR2A and NR2B subunit mRNAs did not change after morphine treatment in any brain region. These results suggest that changes in gene expression of the NR1 subunit of the NMDA receptor are involved in the development of morphine tolerance and dependence. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-54
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Volume365
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 15 Jan 1999

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Dr. Zhi He for her technical assistance in anesthesia. This work was supported by Grant DA 05828 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Keywords

  • In situ hybridization
  • Morphine
  • NMDA receptor
  • Physical dependence
  • Tolerance

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