Cannabinoid and heroin activation of mesolimbic dopamine transmission by a common μ1 opioid receptor mechanism

Gianluigi Tanda, Francesco E. Pontieri, Gaetano Di Chiara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

812 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The effects of the active ingredient of Cannabis, Δ- tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC), and of the highly addictive drug heroin on in vivo dopamine transmission in the nucleus accumbens were compared in Sprague-Dawley rats by brain microdialysis. Δ9-THC and heroin increased extracellular dopamine concentrations selectively in the shell of the nucleus accumbens; these effects were mimicked by the synthetic cannabinoid agonist WIN55212-2. SR141716A, an antagonist of central cannabinoid receptors, prevented the effects of Δ9-THC but not those of heroin. Naloxone, a generic opioid antagonist, administered systemically, or naloxonazine, an antagonist of μ1 opioid receptors, infused into the ventral tegmentum, prevented the action of cannabinoids and heroin on dopamine transmission. Thus, Δ9-THC and heroin exert similar effects on mesolimbic dopamine transmission through a common μ1 oploid receptor mechanism located in the ventral mesencephalic tegmentum.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2048-2050
Number of pages3
JournalScience
Volume276
Issue number5321
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 27 1997

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Dronabinol
Cannabinoids
Heroin
Opioid Receptors
Dopamine
rimonabant
Narcotic Antagonists
Nucleus Accumbens
Tegmentum Mesencephali
Cannabinoid Receptor Antagonists
Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists
Microdialysis
Cannabis
Naloxone
Sprague Dawley Rats
Brain
Pharmaceutical Preparations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Cannabinoid and heroin activation of mesolimbic dopamine transmission by a common μ1 opioid receptor mechanism. / Tanda, Gianluigi; Pontieri, Francesco E.; Di Chiara, Gaetano.

In: Science, Vol. 276, No. 5321, 27.06.1997, p. 2048-2050.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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