Involvement of the dorsal striatum in cue-controlled cocaine seeking.
ABSTRACT Through association with the interoceptive effects of drugs of abuse, neutral environmental stimuli can gain motivational properties themselves, becoming conditioned reinforcers that can evoke craving and relapse to drug seeking. Nucleus accumbens dopamine (DA) neurotransmission plays an important role in the reinforcing effect of cocaine itself, but, unlike nucleus accumbens glutamate, it seems not to mediate the conditioned reinforcing properties of cocaine-paired stimuli. Dorsal striatal DA transmission, in contrast, has been shown to be enhanced during cocaine seeking under a second-order schedule of reinforcement, which depends on the conditioned reinforcing properties of cocaine-associated stimuli. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to evaluate the role of DA and glutamate transmission in the dorsal striatum in cue-controlled cocaine seeking. Infusion of the DA receptor antagonist alpha-flupenthixol into the dorsal striatum decreased cocaine seeking under a second-order schedule of reinforcement. In addition, intradorsal striatal infusion of the AMPA/kainate (KA) receptor antagonist LY293558 (3SR, 4aRS, 6RS, 8aRS-6-[2-(iH-tetrazol-5-yl)ethyl]-1,2,3,4,4a,5,6,7,8,8a-decahydroiso-quinoline-3-carboxylic acid), but not the NMDA receptor antagonist AP-5, also decreased cue-controlled cocaine seeking. These data show that stimulation of DA and AMPA/KA receptors in the dorsal striatum is critical for well established drug seeking that depends on the reinforcing effects of cocaine-associated stimuli. In addition, given the importance of the dorsal striatum in stimulus-response habit learning, these data suggest that the habitual or compulsive quality of persistent drug seeking depends on dorsal striatal mechanisms.
SourceAvailable from: Rodrigo M Leão[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Context-induced reinstatement of drug seeking is a well established animal model for assessing the neural mechanisms underlying context-induced drug relapse, a major factor in human drug addiction. Neural activity in striatum has previously been shown to contribute to context-induced reinstatement of heroin, cocaine, and alcohol seeking, but not yet for methamphetamine seeking. In this study, we found that context-induced reinstatement of methamphetamine seeking increased expression of the neural activity marker Fos in dorsal but not ventral striatum. Reversible inactivation of neural activity in dorsolateral but not dorsomedial striatum using the GABA agonists muscimol and baclofen decreased context-induced reinstatement. Based on our previous findings that Fos-expressing neurons play a critical role in conditioned drug effects, we assessed whether context-induced reinstatement was associated with molecular alterations selectively induced within context-activated Fos-expressing neurons. We used fluorescence-activated cell sorting to isolate reinstatement-activated Fos-positive neurons from Fos-negative neurons in dorsal striatum and used quantitative PCR to assess gene expression within these two populations of neurons. Context-induced reinstatement was associated with increased expression of the immediate early genes Fos and FosB and the NMDA receptor subunit gene Grin2a in only Fos-positive neurons. RNAscope in situ hybridization confirmed that Grin2a, as well as Grin2b, expression were increased in only Fos-positive neurons from dorsolateral, but not dorsomedial, striatum. Our results demonstrate an important role of dorsolateral striatum in context-induced reinstatement of methamphetamine seeking and that this reinstatement is associated with unique gene alterations in Fos-expressing neurons. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/355625-15$15.00/0.The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 04/2015; 35(14):5625-39. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4997-14.2015 · 6.75 Impact Factor
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Drug addiction is characterized by uncontrolled drug consumption and high rates of relapse to drug taking during periods of attempted abstinence. Addiction is now largely considered a disorder of experience-dependent neuroplasticity, driven by remodeling of synapses in reward and motivation relevant brain circuits in response to a history of prolonged drug intake. Alterations in gene expression play a central role in addiction-relevant neuroplasticity, but the mechanisms by which additive drugs remodel brain motivation circuits remains unclear. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of noncoding RNA that can regulate the expression of large numbers of protein-coding mRNA transcripts by binding to the 3' untranslated region (3' UTR) of target transcripts and blocking their translation into the encoded protein or triggering their destabilization and degradation. Emerging evidence has implicated miRNAs in regulating addiction-relevant neuroplasticity in the brain, and in controlling the motivational properties of cocaine and other drugs of abuse. Here, the role for miRNAs in regulating basic aspects of neuronal function is reviewed. The involvement of miRNAs in controlling the motivational properties of addictive drugs is also summarized. Finally, mechanisms by which miRNAs exert their actions on drug intake, when known, are considered.Dialogues in clinical neuroscience 09/2014; 16(3):335-44.
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Use of psychostimulants such as methylphenidate (Ritalin) in medical treatments and as cognitive enhancers in the healthy is increasing. Methylphenidate produces some addiction-related gene regulation in animal models. Recent findings show that combining selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants such as fluoxetine with methylphenidate potentiates methylphenidate-induced gene regulation. We investigated the endurance of such abnormal gene regulation by assessing an established marker for altered gene regulation after drug treatments – blunting (repression) of immediate-early gene (IEG) inducibility – 14 days after repeated methylphenidate + fluoxetine treatment in adolescent rats. Thus, we measured the effects of a 6-day repeated treatment with methylphenidate (5 mg/kg), fluoxetine (5 mg/kg) or their combination on the inducibility (by cocaine) of neuroplasticity-related IEGs (Zif268, Homer1a) in the striatum, by in situ hybridization histochemistry. Repeated methylphenidate treatment alone produced modest gene blunting, while fluoxetine alone had no effect. In contrast, fluoxetine given in conjunction with methylphenidate produced pronounced potentiation of methylphenidate-induced blunting for both genes. This potentiation was seen in many functional domains of the striatum, but was most robust in the lateral, sensorimotor striatum. These enduring molecular changes were associated with potentiated induction of behavioral stereotypies in an open-field test. For illicit psychostimulants, blunting of gene expression is considered part of the molecular basis of addiction. Our results thus suggest that SSRIs such as fluoxetine may increase the addiction liability of methylphenidate.12/2014; 4:109-116. DOI:10.1016/j.baga.2014.10.001