Periaqueductal gray metabotropic glutamate receptor subtype 7 and 8 mediate opposite effects on amino acid release, rostral ventromedial medulla cell activities, and thermal nociception
ABSTRACT The current study has investigated the involvement of periaqueductal gray (PAG) metabotropic glutamate subtype 7 and 8 receptors (mGluR(7) and mGluR(8)) in modulating rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM) ongoing and tail flick-related on and off cell activities. Our study has also investigated the role of PAG mGluR(7) on thermoceptive threshold and PAG glutamate and GABA release. Intra-ventrolateral PAG (S)-3,4-dicarboxyphenylglycine [(S)-3,4-DCPG (2 and 4 nmol/rat)] or N,N(I)-dibenzhydrylethane-1,2-diamin dihydrochloride (AMN082, (1 and 2 nmol/rat), selective mGluR(8) and mGluR(7) agonists, respectively, caused opposite effects on the ongoing RVM on and off cell activities. Tail flick latency was increased or decreased by (S)-3,4-DCPG or AMN082 (2 nmol/rat), respectively. (S)-3,4-DCPG reduced the pause and delayed the onset of the off cell pause. Conversely, AMN082 increased the pause and shortened the onset of off cell pause. (S)-3,4-DCPG or AMN082 did not change the tail flick-induced onset of on-cell peak firing. The tail flick latency and its related electrophysiological effects induced by (S)-3,4-DCPG or AMN082 were prevented by (RS)-alpha-methylserine-o-phosphate (100 nmol/rat), a group III mGluR antagonist. Intra-ventrolateral PAG perfusion with AMN082 (10 and 25 microM), decreased thermoceptive thresholds and glutamate extracellular levels. A decrease in GABA release was also observed. These results show that stimulation of PAG mGluR(8) or mGluR(7) could either relieve or worsen pain perception. The opposite effects on pain behavior correlate with the opposite roles played by mGluR(7) and mGluR(8) on glutamate and GABA release and the ongoing and tail flick-related activities of the RVM on and off cells.
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ABSTRACT: Marijuana has been used to relieve pain for centuries. The analgesic mechanism of its constituents, the cannabinoids, was only revealed after the discovery of cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2 ) two decades ago. The subsequent identification of the endocannabinoids, anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), and their biosynthetic and degradation enzymes discloses the therapeutic potential of compounds targeting the endocannabinoid system for pain control. Inhibitors of the anandamide and 2-AG degradation enzymes, fatty acid amide hydrolase and monoacylglycerol lipase, respectively, may be superior to direct cannabinoid receptor ligands as endocannabinoids are synthesized on demand and rapidly degraded, focusing action at generating sites. Recently, a promising strategy for pain relief was revealed in the periaqueductal gray (PAG). It is initiated by Gq -protein-coupled receptor (Gq PCR) activation of the phospholipase C-diacylglycerol lipase enzymatic cascade, generating 2-AG that produces inhibition of GABAergic transmission (disinhibition) in the PAG, thereby leading to analgesia. Here, we introduce the antinociceptive properties of exogenous cannabinoids and endocannabinoids, involving their biosynthesis and degradation processes, particularly in the PAG. We also review recent studies disclosing the Gq PCR-phospholipase C-diacylglycerol lipase-2-AG retrograde disinhibition mechanism in the PAG, induced by activating several Gq PCRs, including metabotropic glutamatergic (type 5 metabotropic glutamate receptor), muscarinic acetylcholine (M1/M3), and orexin 1 receptors. Disinhibition mediated by type 5 metabotropic glutamate receptor can be initiated by glutamate transporter inhibitors or indirectly by substance P, neurotensin, cholecystokinin and capsaicin. Finally, the putative role of 2-AG generated after activating the above neurotransmitter receptors in stress-induced analgesia is discussed.European Journal of Neuroscience 02/2014; 39(3):467-84. DOI:10.1111/ejn.12475 · 3.67 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Glutamatergic excitatory transmission is implicated in physiological and pathological conditions like learning, memory, neuronal plasticity and emotions, while glutamatergic abnormalities are reported in numerous neurological and psychiatric disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases, epilepsy, stroke, traumatic brain injury, depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and pain. Also, several lines of evidence have accumulated indicating a pivotal role for glutamatergic neurotransmission in mediating addictive behaviors. Among the proteins regulating glutamatergic transmission, the metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR) are being developed as pharmacological targets for treating many neuropsychiatric disorders, including drug addiction. In this review we describe the molecular structure of mGluRs and their distribution, physiology and pharmacology in the central nervous system, as well as their use as targets in preclinical studies of drug addiction.Pharmacology [?] Therapeutics 12/2013; DOI:10.1016/j.pharmthera.2013.12.012 · 7.75 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Brain glutamate has been shown to play an important role in reinstatement to drug seeking, a behavior considered to be of relevance to relapse to drug taking in humans. Therefore, glutamate receptors, in particular metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptors, have become important targets for medication development for the treatment of drug dependence. In this review article, we focus on the mGlu7 receptor subtype, and discuss recent findings with AMN082, a selective mGlu7 receptor allosteric agonist, in animal models with relevance to drug dependence. Systemic or local administration of AMN082 into the nucleus accumbens (NAc), a critical brain region involved in reward and drug dependence processes, inhibited the reinforcing and motivational effects of cocaine, heroin and ethanol, as assessed by the intravenous drug self-administration procedure. In addition, AMN082 inhibited the reward-enhancing effects induced by cocaine, as assessed in the intracranial self-stimulation procedure, and cocaine- or cue-induced reinstatement of drug-seeking behavior. In vivo microdialysis studies indicated that systemic or intra-NAc administration of AMN082 significantly decreased extracellular γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and elevated extracellular glutamate, but had no effect on extracellular dopamine in the NAc, suggesting that a non-dopaminergic mechanism underlies the effects of AMN082 on the actions of cocaine. Further, data indicated that AMN082-induced changes in glutamate were the net effect of two actions: one is the direct inhibition of glutamate release by activation of mGlu7 receptors on glutamatergic neurons; another is the indirect increases of glutamate release mediated by decreases in GABA transmission. These increases in extracellular glutamate functionally antagonized cocaine-induced inhibition of NAc-ventral pallidum GABAergic neurotransmission, and therefore, the rewarding effects of cocaine. In addition, elevated extracellular glutamate activated presynaptic mGlu2/3 autoreceptors which in turn inhibited cocaine priming- or cue-induced enhancement of glutamate release and reinstatement of drug-seeking behavior. Taken together, these findings suggest that the mGlu7 receptor is an important target for medication development for the treatment of drug dependence. AMN082 or other mGlu7 receptor allosteric agonists may have potential as novel pharmacotherapies for cocaine addiction. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'mGluR'.Neuropharmacology 04/2012; 66. DOI:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2012.04.010 · 4.82 Impact Factor