Agmatine does not have activity at α2-adrenoceptors which modulate the firing rate of locus coeruleus neurones: an electrophysiological study in rat
ABSTRACT Agmatine (decarboxylated arginine) has been proposed as an endogenous ligand for non-adrenoceptor, imidazoline binding sites, but also binds to α2-adrenoceptors. The interaction of agmatine with α2-adrenoceptors was evaluated by studying the effect of agmatine on the firing rate of locus coeruleus (LC) neurones using extracellular recordings in anesthetized rats and rat brain slices. In vivo, local application of agmatine into the LC caused a slight and short-lasting increase in cell firing rate (P < 0.005). In vitro, agmatine failed to change the firing rate of LC neurones nor did it antagonize the inhibitory effect of noradrenaline on these cells. Since α2-adrenoceptors are known to inhibit the firing of LC cells, we conclude that agmatine does not have agonist or antagonist properties at α2-adrenoceptors of these neurones.
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ABSTRACT: 1. Imidazoline binding sites have been reported to be present in the locus coeruleus (LC). To investigate the role of these sites in the control of LC neuron activity, we studied the effect of imidazolines using in vivo and in vitro single-unit extracellular recording techniques. 2. In anaesthetized rats, local (27 pmoles) and systemic (1 mg kg(-1), i.v.) administrations of 2-(2-benzofuranyl)-2-imidazoline (2-BFI), a selective I-imidazoline receptor ligand, increased the firing rate of LC cells (maximal increase: 22+/-5%, P<0.001 and 16+/-7%, P<0.001 respectively). Chronic pretreatment with the irreversible monoamine oxidase inhibitor clorgyline (3 mg kg(-1), i.p., every 12 h for 14 days) abolished this effect. 3. In rat midpontine brain slices containing the LC, bath application (1 mM) of the imidazolines 2-BFI, 2-(4,5-dihydroimidaz-2-yl)-quinoline (BU224), idazoxan, efaroxan, phentolamine and (2-2-methoxy-1,4-benzodioxan-2-yl)-2-imidazoline (RX821002) reversibly stimulated LC cells. The maximal effect was approximately 90% except for RX821002 and efaroxan which induced smaller maximal effects (approximately 58% and approximately 35% respectively). Simultaneous application of idazoxan and 2BFI did not lead to additive effects. 4. Bath application of the alpha2-adrenoceptor antagonists, yohimbine (1 - 10 microM) and N-ethoxycarbonyl-1,2-dihydroquinoline (EEDQ) (10 microM), failed to modify LC activity. The irreversible blockade of alpha2-adrenoceptors with EEDQ (10 microM) did not alter the effect of idazoxan or that of efaroxan. Previous application of clorgyline (10 microM) did not modify the excitatory effect of 2-BFI or efaroxan. 5. Changes in the pH of the bathing solution (6.84-7.84) did not influence the effect caused by idazoxan. Bath application of 2-BFI (1 mM) reversed the inhibition induced by diazoxide (300 microM), an ATP-sensitive K+ channel opener, whereas application of glibenclamide (3 microM), an ATP-sensitive K+ channel blocker, partially blocked the effect of 2-BFI. 6. This study shows that imidazoline compounds stimulate the firing rate of LC neurons. This effect is not mediated by alpha2-adrenoceptors nor by I1 or I2-imidazoline receptors but involves a different subtype of imidazoline receptor. Our results indicate that this receptor is located extracellularly and modulates ATP-sensitive K+ channels.British Journal of Pharmacology 01/1998; 125(8):1685-1694. · 4.99 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Panic disorder is a highly prevalent neuropsychiatric disorder that shows co-occurrence with substance abuse. Here, we demonstrate that TrkC, the high-affinity receptor for neurotrophin-3, is a key molecule involved in panic disorder and opiate dependence, using a transgenic mouse model (TgNTRK3). Constitutive TrkC overexpression in TgNTRK3 mice dramatically alters spontaneous firing rates of locus coeruleus (LC) neurons and the response of the noradrenergic system to chronic opiate exposure, possibly related to the altered regulation of neurotrophic peptides observed. Notably, TgNTRK3 LC neurons showed an increased firing rate in saline-treated conditions and profound abnormalities in their response to met(5)-enkephalin. Behaviorally, chronic morphine administration induced a significantly increased withdrawal syndrome in TgNTRK3 mice. In conclusion, we show here that the NT-3/TrkC system is an important regulator of neuronal firing in LC and could contribute to the adaptations of the noradrenergic system in response to chronic opiate exposure. Moreover, our results indicate that TrkC is involved in the molecular and cellular changes in noradrenergic neurons underlying both panic attacks and opiate dependence and support a functional endogenous opioid deficit in panic disorder patients.Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience 01/2010; 3:60. · 4.16 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Agmatine [2-(4-aminobutyl)guanidine] is an endogenous amine proposed as a neurotransmitter/neuromodulator that binds to multiple target receptors in brain. Besides, many central and peripheral functions, agmatine have been implicated in the process of drug addiction. The purpose of the present study was to examine the effects of centrally injected agmatine on nicotine induced locomotor sensitization in Swiss male mice. Our data shows that repeated injections of nicotine (0.4 mg/kg, sc, twice daily for 7 days) gradually increased locomotion during 7 days development period or after 3 days (nicotine) withdrawal phase challenged with nicotine (0.4 mg/kg, sc) on day 11. Mice were pretreated with agmatine (40-80 microg, icv) or agents known to increase endogenous brain agmatine levels [e.g. an agmatine biosynthetic precursor, L-arginine (80 microg, icv), ornithine decarboxylase inhibitor, difluoromethyl-ornithine (50 microg, icv), diamine oxidase inhibitor, aminoguanidine (25 microg, icv) and agmatinase inhibitor, arcaine (50 microg, icv)] 30 min before daily first nicotine injection or during nicotine withdrawal phase. All these treatments attenuated the development as well as incubation of locomotor sensitization to nicotine. Coadministration of agmatine (20 microg, icv) and alpha(2)-adrenoreceptors agonist, clonidine (0.1 microg, icv) evoked synergistic inhibition of nicotine sensitization. Conversely, prior administration of alpha(2)-adrenoceptor antagonist, yohimbine (5mg/kg, ip) or idazoxan (0.4 mg/kg, ip) reversed the inhibitory effect of agmatine on nicotine sensitization. There was no significant difference in activity between mice injected with any of these agents/saline alone and saline/saline groups. These data indicate that agmatine attenuates nicotine induced locomotor sensitization via a mechanism which may involve alpha(2)-adrenergic receptors. Thus, agmatine might have therapeutic implications in the treatment of nicotine addiction and deserve further investigations.Behavioural brain research 05/2010; 213(2):161-74. · 3.22 Impact Factor