Extinction-induced upregulation in AMPA receptors reduces cocaine-seeking behaviour.

Division of Molecular Psychiatry and the Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.
Nature (Impact Factor: 42.35). 02/2003; 421(6918):70-5. DOI: 10.1038/nature01249
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Cocaine addiction is thought to involve persistent neurobiological changes that facilitate relapse to drug use despite efforts to abstain. But the propensity for relapse may be reduced by extinction training--a form of inhibitory learning that progressively reduces cocaine-seeking behaviour in the absence of cocaine reward. Here we show that extinction training during withdrawal from chronic cocaine self-administration induces experience-dependent increases in the GluR1 and GluR2/3 subunits of AMPA (alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate) glutamate receptors in the nucleus accumbens shell, a brain region that is critically involved in cocaine reward. Increases in the GluR1 subunit are positively associated with the level of extinction achieved during training, suggesting that GluR1 may promote extinction of cocaine seeking. Indeed, viral-mediated overexpression of both GluR1 and GluR2 in nucleus accumbens shell neurons facilitates extinction of cocaine- but not sucrose-seeking responses. A single extinction training session, when conducted during GluR subunit overexpression, attenuates stress-induced relapse to cocaine seeking even after GluR overexpression declines. Our findings indicate that extinction-induced plasticity in AMPA receptors may facilitate control over cocaine seeking by restoring glutamatergic tone in the nucleus accumbens, and may reduce the propensity for relapse under stressful situations in prolonged abstinence.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The molecular mechanisms underlying drug extinction remain largely unknown, although a role for medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) glutamate neurons has been suggested. Considering that the mPFC sends glutamate efferents to the ventral tegmental area (VTA), we tested whether the VTA is involved in methamphetamine (METH) extinction via conditioned place preference (CPP). Among various METH-CPP stages, we found that the amount of phospho-GluR1/Ser845 increased in the VTA at behavioral extinction, but not the acquisition or withdrawal stage. Via surface biotinylation, we found that levels of membrane GluR1 were significantly increased during METH-CPP extinction, while no change was observed at the acquisition stage. Specifically, the number of dendritic spines in the VTA was increased at behavioral extinction, but not during acquisition. To validate the role of the mPFC in METH-CPP extinction, we lesioned the mPFC. Ibotenic acid lesioning of the mPFC did not affect METH-CPP acquisition, however, it abolished the extinction stage and reversed the enhanced phospho-GluR1/Ser845 levels as well as increases in VTA dendritic spines during METH-CPP extinction. Overall, this study demonstrates that the mPFC plays a critical role in METH-CPP extinction and identifies the VTA as an alternative target in mediating the extinction of drug conditioning. © 2015 Chen and Chen; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.
    Learning & memory (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y.) 03/2015; 22(3):149-58. DOI:10.1101/lm.037721.114 · 4.08 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We tested the hypothesis that infusion of anisomycin into the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) disrupts the reconsolidation of a cocaine-associated memory in the rat cocaine self-administration model. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained to lever press for cocaine self-administration (0.5 mg/kg/infusion) along with a cue light presentation on an FR1 followed by an FR3 schedule of reinforcement for 2 h/day. Rats were then given extinction sessions or an equivalent forced abstinence period followed by a 5 min memory reactivation session during which time they received an ip cocaine injection (10 mg/kg, ip) and were allowed to press for contingent cue light presentation. Immediately after reactivation, they were administered an intra-mPFC infusion of vehicle or anisomycin. Two additional control groups received extinction and either no memory reactivation and intra-mPFC infusions as above or intra-mPFC infusions 6 h after memory reactivation. A fourth group received forced abstinence and intra-mPFC infusions immediately after memory reactivation. Combined cocaine + cue-induced reinstatement was given 2-3 days (early) and 8-12 days (late) later. Rats given anisomycin in the Extinction + Reactivation demonstrated decreased reinstatement, while anisomycin treatment did not alter behavior in any of the other three groups. These results suggest that extinction training may recruit the mPFC such that it renders the memory susceptible to disruption by anisomycin. These findings have implications for using extinction training prior to or in conjunction with other therapies, including reconsolidation disruption, to enhance prefrontal control over drug-seeking behavior. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
    Neuropharmacology 01/2015; 92. DOI:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2014.12.029 · 4.82 Impact Factor
  • Source