The emergence of high-efficacy synthetic cannabinoids as drugs of abuse in readily available K2/'Spice' smoking blends has exposed users to much more potent and effective substances than the phytocannabinoids present in cannabis. Increasing reports of adverse reactions, including dependence and withdrawal, are appearing in the clinical literature. Here we investigated whether the effects of one such synthetic cannabinoid, 1-pentyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-018), would be altered by a prior history of Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-THC) exposure, in assays of conditioned taste aversion and conditioned place preference. In the conditioned taste aversion procedure, JWH-018 induced marked and persistent aversive effects in mice with no previous cannabinoid history, but the magnitude and duration of these aversive effects were significantly blunted in mice previously treated with an ascending dose regimen of Δ-THC. Similarly, in the conditioned place preference procedure, JWH-018 induced dose-dependent aversive effects in mice with no previous drug history, but mice exposed to Δ-THC before place conditioning showed reduced aversions at a high JWH-018 dose and apparent rewarding effects at a low dose of JWH-018. These findings suggest that a history of Δ-THC exposure 'protects' against aversive effects and 'unmasks' appetitive effects of the high-efficacy synthetic cannabinoid JWH-018 in mice. This pattern of results implies that cannabinoid-naive individuals administering K2/'Spice' products for the first-time may be at an increased risk for adverse reactions, whereas those with a history of marijuana use may be particularly sensitive to the reinforcing effects of high-efficacy cannabinoids present in these commercial smoking blends.
Nicotine withdrawal produces cognitive deficits that can predict relapse. Amelioration of these cognitive deficits emerges as a target in current smoking cessation therapies. In rodents, withdrawal from chronic nicotine disrupts contextual fear conditioning (CFC), whereas acute nicotine enhances this hippocampus-specific learning and memory. These modifications are mediated by β2-subunit-containing (β2*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the hippocampus. We aimed to test ABT-089, a partial agonist of α4β2*, and ABT-107, an α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, for amelioration of cognitive deficits induced by withdrawal from chronic nicotine in mice. Mice underwent chronic nicotine administration (12.6 mg/kg/day or saline for 12 days), followed by 24 h of withdrawal. At the end of withdrawal, mice received 0.3 or 0.6 mg/kg ABT-089 or 0.3 mg/kg ABT-107 (doses were determined through initial dose-response experiments and prior studies) and were trained and tested for CFC. Nicotine withdrawal produced deficits in CFC that were reversed by acute ABT-089, but not ABT-107. Cued conditioning was not affected. Taken together, our results suggest that modulation of hippocampal learning and memory using ABT-089 may be an effective component of novel therapeutic strategies for nicotine addiction.
The atypical antidepressant, bupropion, causes a partial reversal of motor deficits in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated primates. However, its monoamine uptake blocking actions are believed to be mediated by the major metabolites, racemic (-)-(2R,3R)-2-(3-chlorophenyl-3,5,5-trimethyl-2-morphinol) (R,R-hydroxybupropion) and (+)-(2S,3S)-2-(3-chlorophenyl-3,5,5-trimethyl-2-morphinol) (S,S-hydroxybupropion). Therefore, we have evaluated the ability of enantiomers to improve locomotor activity and motor disability in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated common marmosets. Bupropion produced a little increase in locomotor activity and a more pronounced improvement in motor disability. The S,S-hydroxybupropion, but not the R,R-hydroxybupropion, enantiomer dose-dependently increased both locomotor activity and reversed motor disability. Combined administration of S,S-hydroxybupropion and R,R-hydroxybupropion at the same dose (analogous to the racemate) again improved motor function and to the same extent as produced by S,S-hydroxybupropion alone. The data suggest that the S,S-enantiomer of hydroxybupropion may possess potential antiparkinsonian activity.
Increased oxidative stress is implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease in which dopaminergic neurons are intrinsically susceptible to oxidative damage. Swiss albino mice were pretreated with Pycnogenol (PYC), an extract of Pinus maritime bark [20 mg/kg body weight, intraperitoneally (i.p.)] once daily for 15 days. Thereafter, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) (20 mg/kg body weight, intraperitoneally) was given four times at 2-hour intervals on 1 day only. Behaviours were altered in the MPTP group as compared with the vehicle-treated group and were restored in the PYC-pretreated MPTP group. The activity of antioxidant enzymes and the content of glutathione were significantly depleted in the MPTP-induced Parkinsonian group. The MPTP group pretreated with PYC showed significant protection of the activity of antioxidant enzymes and glutathione content when compared with the vehicle-treated MPTP group. A significantly elevated level of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances in the MPTP group was decreased significantly in the animals pretreated with PYC. An increase in the number of dopaminergic D2 receptors and decrease in the level of dopamine and its metabolite 3,4-dihydroxyphenyl acetic acid in the striatum were observed after MPTP injection, and restored significantly after PYC pretreatment. Thus, PYC may be used to prevent or reduce the deterioration caused by free radicals, thereby preventing subsequent behavioural and biochemical changes that occur in Parkinsonian mice.
Pigeons trained to discriminate 0.1 mg/kg flumazenil, proposed as an in-vivo model to study interactions with diazepam-insensitive gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptors, were tested with various GABAergic and non-GABAergic compounds. As a result of its pharmacological selectivity, the model was suitable for further examining previously reported flumazenil-like effects of gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB). Flumazenil and the GABAA negative modulator Ro 15-4513 produced 82-100% flumazenil-appropriate responding. Diazepam and the direct-acting GABAA agonists muscimol and 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo[5,4-c]pyridine-3-ol (THIP) produced 38-64% flumazenil-appropriate responding. GHB, its precursors 1,4-butanediol (1,4-BD) and gamma-butyrolactone (GBL), and the GABAB agonists baclofen and SKF97541 produced 0-24% flumazenil-appropriate responding. Baclofen shifted the flumazenil dose-response curve to the right and down, possibly involving perceptual masking of the discriminative stimulus effects of flumazenil by agonist activity at GABAB receptors. These masking effects of baclofen were blocked by the GABAB antagonist CGP35348. When CGP35348 was given together with GHB to block its GABAB agonist effects, GHB did not produce flumazenil-appropriate responding. Conceivably, effects of GHB at non-GABAB receptors (e.g. diazepam-sensitive GABAA receptors and GHB receptors) may interfere with the expression of its flumazenil-like discriminative stimulus effects. The asymmetric substitution between GHB and flumazenil is consistent with the hypothesis that the discriminative stimulus effects of GHB consist of several components, not all of which are mimicked by flumazenil.
Gamma-hydroxybutyric acid has been proposed as a pharmacotherapy for alcoholism in part based on similar discriminative stimulus effects as ethanol. To date, drug discrimination studies with gamma-hydroxybutyric acid and ethanol have exclusively used rodents or pigeons as subjects. To evaluate possible differences between species, sex, and route of administration, this study investigated the substitution of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (intragastrically or intramuscularly) for ethanol 30 or 60 min after administration in male (n=6) and female (n=7) cynomolgus monkeys trained to discriminate 1.0 and 2.0 g/kg ethanol. At least one dose of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid completely or partially substituted for ethanol in three of the 13 monkeys tested, with each case occurring in female monkeys. Ethanol-appropriate responding did not increase with gamma-hydroxybutyric acid dose. Monkeys were more sensitive to the response rate decreasing effects of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid administered intramuscularly compared with intragastrically. The lack of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid substitution for ethanol suggests that these drugs have different receptor bases for discrimination. Furthermore, the data do not strongly support shared discriminative stimulus effects as the rationale for gamma-hydroxybutyric acid pharmacotherapy for alcoholism.
The selective serotonin (5-HT) reuptake inhibitor, citalopram, is a racemic mixture of the stereoisomers, S-(+)-citalopram (escitalopram) and R-(-)-citalopram (R-citalopram). R-citalopram has been shown to counteract the 5-HT enhancing properties of escitalopram in acute studies in animals. In the present study we report, for the first time, on an interaction between R-citalopram and escitalopram after repeated dosing in a rat chronic mild stress (CMS) model of depression. The effect of escitalopram (2.0, 3.9 and 7.8 mg/kg per day), R-citalopram (7.8 mg/kg per day) and escitalopram 3.9 mg/kg per day plus R-citalopram 7.8 mg/kg per day were studied and compared to the effect of citalopram (8.0 mg/kg per day), imipramine and R-fluoxetine (8.9 mg/kg per day). Significant effects relative to a vehicle-treated group were achieved from week 1 for escitalopram (3.9 and 7.8 mg/kg per day), from week 2 for citalopram (8.0 mg/kg per day), from week 3 for R-fluoxetine (8.9 mg/kg per day) and from week 4 for escitalopram (2.0 mg/kg per day) and imipramine (8.9 mg/kg per day). R-citalopram (7.8 mg/kg per day) and escitalopram (3.9 mg/kg per day) plus R-citalopram (7.8 mg/kg per day) did not differ significantly from vehicle. There were no drug-induced effects in non-stressed control groups. In conclusion, escitalopram showed a shorter time to response in the rat CMS model of depression than citalopram, which was faster acting than R-fluoxetine and imipramine. R-citalopram counteracted the effect of escitalopram. The mechanism of action of R-citalopram is, at the moment unclear, but may be relevant to the improved clinical antidepressant activity seen with escitalopram in comparison with citalopram, and may also indicate an earlier response to escitalopram compared to other selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
Clozapine, the prototype for atypical antipsychotic drugs, is used in the drug discrimination paradigm as a model for screening atypical from typical antipsychotic drugs. Previous drug discrimination studies in rats have shown that a 1.25 mg/kg clozapine training dose provides full stimulus generalization (i.e.) >or=80% condition-appropriate responding) to most atypical antipsychotic drugs, although a 5.0 mg/kg clozapine training dose appears necessary to provide stimulus generalization to other atypical antipsychotic drugs. The present study sought to characterize the pharmacological mechanisms that mediate these clozapine training doses. In rats trained to discriminate 1.25 vs. 5.0 mg/kg clozapine vs. vehicle in a three-choice drug discrimination task, various receptor-selective compounds were tested for stimulus generalization. The antidepressant mianserin was also tested. Full stimulus generalization from the 1.25 mg/kg clozapine training dose occurred only to mianserin (98.8%). Partial substitution (i.e. >or=60% and <80% condition-appropriate responding) to the 5.0 mg/kg clozapine training dose occurred for the muscarinic receptor antagonist scopolamine. The combined total percentage of responding on the 1.25 and 5.0 mg/kg clozapine levers, however, was well above the full substitution criteria at the 0.25, 0.5, and 1.0 mg/kg scopolamine doses. The M1 agonist N-desmethylclozapine, the nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine, the D1 antagonist SCH 23390, the D4 antagonist LU 38-012, the 5-HT1A agonist (+)-8-OH-DPAT, the 5-HT1A antagonist WAY 100 635, the 5-HT2A/2B/2C antagonist ritanserin, the 5-HT6 antagonist RO4368554, the alpha1 antagonist prazosin, the alpha2 antagonist yohimbine, and the histamine H1 antagonist pyrilamine all failed to substitute for either the 1.25 or the 5.0 mg/kg clozapine training doses. These results are consistent with previous evidence that antidepressant drugs have a tendency to substitute for clozapine and that muscarinic receptor antagonism may mediate the discriminative stimulus properties of 5.0 mg/kg clozapine. The lack of stimulus generalization from either clozapine training dose to other receptor-selective compounds, however, fails to explain how this model screens atypical from typical antipsychotic drugs and suggests that the discriminative stimulus properties of clozapine consist of a compound cue.
The prototypical atypical antipsychotic drug (APD) clozapine (CLZ) elicits a discriminative cue that appears to be similar to the stimulus properties elicited by atypical, but not typical, antipsychotic drugs in two-choice drug discrimination procedures. However, the ability of CLZ to generalize to atypical APDs depends on the training dose, since several atypical APDs (e.g. sertindole, risperidone) do not substitute for a 5.0 mg/kg CLZ training dose in rats, but do so for a 1.25 mg/kg CLZ training dose. Yet, a 1.25 mg/kg CLZ discriminative stimulus has not generalized to all atypical APDs either (e.g. quetiapine); thus, both 1.25 mg/kg and 5.0 mg/kg CLZ discriminative stimuli may be necessary to provide a better screen for atypical APDs. The present study sought to determine whether a three-choice 1.25 mg/kg CLZ versus 5.0 mg/kg CLZ versus vehicle drug discrimination task in rats might better distinguish atypical from typical APDs. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained in this three-choice drug discrimination task with a fixed ratio 30 reinforcement schedule for food. Clozapine produced full substitution (>or=80% condition-appropriate responding) for both the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ dose (ED50=0.09 mg/kg) and the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ dose (ED50=2.71 mg/kg). The atypical APD olanzapine produced full substitution for the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ dose, but not for the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ dose (ED50=1.55 mg/kg). In contrast, the atypical APD quetiapine produced full substitution for the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ dose (ED50=0.13 mg/kg), but not for the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ dose. Similarly, the atypical APD sertindole produced full substitution for only the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ dose (ED50=0.94 mg/kg). Risperidone, another atypical APD, produced partial substitution (>or=60% and <or=80% condition-appropriate responding) for the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ dose, and failed to substitute for the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ dose. The atypical APD ziprasidone and the typical APDs haloperidol and chlorpromazine failed to substitute for either CLZ training dose. These results demonstrated that the 1.25 mg/kg CLZ training dose provides partial or full stimulus generalization to more atypical APDs than does the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ training dose. Full substitution by olanzapine for only the 5.0 mg/kg CLZ dose suggests that this higher training dose is also important for screening atypical APDs.
Acute and chronic antidepressant drug treatments respectively decrease and increase the aggressive behaviour of resident rats during encounters with unfamiliar conspecifics. We have now examined the effect of the 5-hydroxytryptamine1A receptor antagonist, WAY-100635, on fluoxetine-, paroxetine- or venlafaxine-induced changes in aggression. WAY-100635 (0.1 mg/kg), which did not modify behaviour when given alone, potentiated the venlafaxine (5.54 mg/kg)-induced reduction in aggression after acute treatment and, during chronic treatment, accelerated the fluoxetine (0.34 mg/kg/day)-induced increase in aggression, from day 5 to day 2. A similar change in time course was seen with paroxetine (0.33 mg/kg/day), although the increase in aggression was smaller. Venlafaxine (5.54 mg/kg/day, alone or co-administered with WAY-100635) increased aggression by day 2. During chronic treatment, therefore, venlafaxine, at the dose used, had a more rapid onset of action than either fluoxetine or paroxetine, whereas the fluoxetine- and paroxetine-, but not the venlafaxine-, induced increase in aggression was accelerated by WAY-100635. These studies further support the hypothesis that selective blockade of the 5-hydroxytryptamine1A receptor augments the effects of antidepressant drugs in an animal model predictive of antidepressant activity, presumably by concomitant blockade of the somatodendritic 5-hydroxytryptamine1A autoreceptor-mediated negative feedback system of serotonergic neurones.
In this experiment we examined the effect of a serotonin receptor (5-HT1A) agonist and antagonist WAY-100635 (N-[2-(4-[2-methoxy-phenyl]-1-piperazinyl)ethyl]-N-2-pyridinylcyclohexane-carboxamide) on temporal differentiation, in intact rats and rats whose serotonergic (5-HTergic) pathways had been destroyed by 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine (5,7-DHT). Thirteen rats received 5,7-DHT-induced lesions of the median and dorsal raphe nuclei; 14 rats received sham lesions. They were trained to press two levers (A and B) in 50-s trials, in which reinforcement was contingent upon responding on A in the first half, and B in the second half, of the trial. Logistic psychophysical curves were fitted to the relative response rate data (percent responding on B, %B), for derivation of timing indices [T50 (time corresponding to %B=50%), slope, Weber fraction] following WAY-100635, 8-OH-DPAT [8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin], combinations of WAY-100635+8-OH-DPAT, and vehicle alone. WAY-100635 (30, 100 and 300 microg/kg, s.c.) did not affect the timing indices. 8-OH-DPAT (100, 200 microg/kg, s.c.) reduced T50 without affecting the Weber fraction. WAY-100635 (300 microg/kg) abolished the effect of 8-OH-DPAT on T50 in both the lesioned and sham-lesioned groups. 5-HT levels in the neocortex, hippocampus, amygdala, nucleus accumbens and hypothalamus of the lesioned group were <20% of those in the sham-lesioned group; catecholamine levels were unaffected. The results confirm that 8-OH-DPAT disrupts temporal differentiation in a free-operant psychophysical schedule, reducing T50, and indicate that this effect of 8-OH-DPAT is mediated by postsynaptic 5-HT1A receptors.
The serotonergic system has a broad influence on behavior, but its specific contribution to novel object exploration remains to be examined. Toward this end, we assessed the impact of the 5-HT1A agonist, 8-OHDPAT (0.01-0.05 mg/kg) and the 5-HT1A antagonist, WAY-100635 (0.01-0.05 mg/kg) on novel object exploration in a familiar open-field environment. 8-OHDPAT produced a dose-related inhibition of responding to the novel object, whereas, WAY-100635 treatment induced a dose-related increase in the investigatory response to the novel object. Combined, the effects of WAY and 8-OHDPAT treatments were statistically indistinguishable from saline. In terms of locomotor activity, only the highest dose of 8-OHDPAT (0.05 mg/kg) altered locomotor activity and the effect was inhibitory. These findings provide evidence for an involvement of the serotonergic system in the response to novel stimuli and indicate that this effect can be dissociated from effects on overall activity including locomotor, rearing and grooming behaviors.
In-vitro studies have shown that WAY 100635 is not only a potent 5-HT1A antagonist, but also has high affinity and efficacy at the dopamine D(4) receptor. Nevertheless, the behavioral effects of this compound have not been investigated. This study sought to characterize the discriminative stimulus effects produced by WAY 100635. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were trained in a two-lever, fixed ratio 50, food-reinforced task with WAY 100635 (10 micromol/kg) as a discriminative stimulus. Substitution tests with different doses of WAY 100635 and (-)-pindolol, and combination tests with two 5-HT1A agonists, 8-OH-DPAT and LY 293284; and two dopamine D(4) antagonists, sonepiprazole and A-381393, were performed. Rats trained with a low dose (0.74 micromol/kg) of WAY 100635 could not learn the discrimination task after more than 3 months of sessions. Rats trained to discriminate 10 micromol/kg of WAY 100635 from saline achieved the criterion of accuracy after approximately 35 training sessions. WAY 100635 (2.5-10 micromol/kg) produced a dose-dependent increase in WAY 100635-appropriate responding, with a mean effective dose of 3.44 micromol/kg, whereas saline or pindolol (5-25 micromol/kg) administration resulted in 0% drug lever responding. Pretreatment with the 5-HT(1A) agonists 8-OH-DPAT or LY 293284 did not modify the WAY 100635 curve, but pretreatment with the selective dopamine D(4) antagonists sonepiprazole or A-381393 completely blocked the cue. These results indicate that the discriminative stimulus effect produced by WAY 100635 is mediated by activation of dopamine D(4) receptors.
The selective 5-HT(1A) antagonist WAY-100635 was employed to further clarify the respective contributions of 5-HT(1A) receptors to the effects of the 5-HT(1A) agonist 8-OH-DPAT, the 5-HT(2) agonist DOI, and the mixed 5-HT(1A/2) agonist LSD on exploratory locomotion in rats. In nocturnal studies of well-handled rats during their first exposure to the Behavioral Pattern Monitor, which enables analyses of quantitative and qualitative changes in locomotor activity, locomotor and investigatory responses were reduced by treatment with either 8-OH-DPAT, DOI, or LSD. The hypoactivity produced by 8-OH-DPAT, but not that produced by DOI, was antagonized by pretreatment with WAY-100635. These results substantiate the effectiveness and functional specificity of WAY-100635 as a 5-HT(1A) antagonist. Furthermore, these results are inconsistent with a functional interaction between 5-HT(1A) and 5-HT(2) receptors in the control of locomotor behavior. The decreases in locomotion produced by LSD were attenuated by pretreatment with WAY-100635, indicating that the effects of LSD in this paradigm are due partly to agonist actions at 5-HT(1A) receptors. Therefore, 5-HT(1A) receptors appear to play a direct role in mediating the effects of LSD on rodent locomotion.
Development of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonists for a variety of disorders has been hindered by their production of phencyclidine (PCP)-like psychological effects and abuse potential. There is, however, evidence to suggest that this problem might be mitigated by targeting NMDA receptors subtypes, in particular, those containing the NR2B subunit. To further test this hypothesis, the NR2B selective antagonist CP-101 606 (traxoprodil) was evaluated in two animal models: drug discrimination, a model of the subjective effects of drugs in humans, and self-administration, which evaluates the reinforcing properties of the drug. In the first study, CP-101 606(3-300 microg/kg/infusion) was tested for intravenous self-administration in rhesus monkeys experienced in PCP (5.6 microg/kg/infusion, intravenously) self-administration. In the second study, CP-101 606 was tested for production of PCP-like discriminative stimulus effects in rats (3-56 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) and rhesus monkeys (0.3-5.6 mg/kg intravenously). Evidence was obtained for reinforcing effects of at least one dose of CP-101 606 in all four monkeys. In rats, CP-101 606 produced more than 80% mean PCP-lever selection (2.0 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) but, unlike PCP itself, the dose producing the highest level of substitution was accompanied by more than 50% suppression of response rates. In monkeys, CP-101 606 produced more than 90% PCP-lever selection (0.1 mg/kg intramuscularly) in three of four animals at doses that did not significantly decrease rates of responding. The data show that CP-101 606 has some PCP-like discriminative stimulus effects in rats and monkeys and functions as a positive reinforcer in monkeys. These results suggest that inhibition of NR2B subunit containing NMDA receptors plays a role in the production of the subjective effects and abuse potential associated with many subtype-nonselective NMDA receptor antagonists such as PCP.
The present study investigated the hypothesis that behavioural sensitization to psychomotor stimulants is expressed only if the internal state of the animal is the same as it was at the time of sensitization development. This state-dependency hypothesis has previously been put forward to explain the apparent blockade of sensitization by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonists. The present study used amphetamine (0.375 mg/kg) as the stimulant and chlordiazepoxide (CDP) as a secondary stimulus. Mice were given double injections of either amphetamine + CDP, amphetamine + saline, CDP + saline, or saline + saline daily over 8 days. On the ninth and tenth days, all mice were challenged with amphetamine + saline and with CDP + saline, in a counterbalanced design. CDP does not show evidence of locomotor sensitization and does not act at NMDA receptors, but in other studies it has been shown to give rise to state-dependent-like effects. Thus any progressive augmentation of the response to repeated amphetamine + CDP treatment would be attributable to amphetamine sensitization, and any blockade of sensitization would not be due to NMDA receptor antagonism. Both groups receiving amphetamine became sensitized over the first 8 days (shown by progressive increases in locomotion). When challenged with amphetamine alone, the amphetamine + CDP group failed to show a sensitized response. This observation supports the state-dependency hypothesis and emphasizes the importance of considering the context provided by drug-induced internal states in studies of sensitization.
Negative or defect symptoms refer to a reduction in normal functioning. In schizophrenia, negative symptoms encompass, among others, anhedonia, flat affect, avolition and social withdrawal. These symptoms have been found to be particularly prominent in the more chronic phase of the illness and seem to be virtually insensitive to current antipsychotic treatment. This review focuses on the possibilities and limitations of animal models for the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. Following a review of the negative symptoms in schizophrenia, attention is focused on the two symptoms most often modelled in animals - anhedonia and social withdrawal. We then look at the important question of how to model schizophrenic pathology in animals. Since the exact pathology is still far from clear, most efforts have in the past concentrated on using psychotomimetic drugs such as amphetamine or phencyclidine. The recently accumulated knowledge that schizophrenia probably results from disturbances in the normal development of the brain has led to a surge of new animal models in which the long-term consequences of early manipulations are investigated. However, so far these models have predominantly concentrated on the positive rather than the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. The last part of this review is dedicated to the question of validation of animal models for anhedonia and social withdrawal. The general conclusion is that very few models have so far been adequately tested. The lack of currently effective treatment further hampers the study of such validation.
Mice lacking the dopamine transporter (DAT-/-) are characterized by high extracellular dopamine levels and spontaneous hyperlocomotion. We performed a detailed analysis of the behavioural phenotype of DAT-/- mice in order to identify other behavioural impairments associated with the hyperdopaminergic tone of these mutant mice. In particular, we investigated locomotor activity, exploration, and social and maternal behaviours, which are known to be regulated by dopamine. DAT-/- mice were easily aroused by novelty and always responded with hyperlocomotion, which interfered with habituation to the testing environment, exploratory behaviour in an open field and the coping response to forced swimming stress. Social behaviours such as interaction with an unknown congener or aggressiveness were not modified in DAT-/- mice compared with DAT+/- and DAT+/+ mice, although the maternal behaviour of mutant females was severely disturbed. Haloperidol and clozapine reversed the hyperactivity in DAT-/- mice, with a rightward shift of the dose-response curve compared with control animals, suggesting a dopamine-mediated effect. These results emphasize the role of dopamine regulation in locomotion, exploration and maternal behaviours and suggest that mice with a genetic deletion of DAT may represent a useful model to elucidate the altered behavioural processes accompanying pathological conditions associated with hyperdopaminergic function.
The present study investigated the potential benefit of the ethyl ester of N-phenylacetylprolylglycine (GVS-111) on the model of bilateral frontal lobectomy (BFL) in rats. The animals in Experiment 1 were trained in an active avoidance task and subsequently underwent BFL. The animals in Experiment 2 were first assessed in an open field and in a passive avoidance test before the BFL was performed. BFL dramatically decreased performance in the active avoidance test, disturbed habituation of horizontal activity in the open field and diminished the latency to enter the dark compartment in the passive avoidance test. GVS-111, administered in a dose of 0.5 mg/kg/day i.p. for 9 days following the operation, was found to improve performance in both active avoidance and passive avoidance and restored habituation of horizontal activity in the lobectomized animals.
Local thrombosis of the frontal cortex (Fr1 and Fr3 fields), caused by combination of the intravenous photosensitive dye Rose Bengal administration with focused high-intensity illumination of the frontal bone, was shown to provoke a pronounced deficit in step-through passive avoidance performance in rats without concomitant motor disturbances. N-Phenylacetyl-L-prolylglycine ethyl ester (GVS-111) administered intravenously at a dose of 0.5 mg/kg/day, for the first time 1 h after ischaemic lesion and then for 9 post-operative days, with the last administration 15 min before testing, attenuated the deficit. This treatment significantly diminished the volume of the infarcted area. Thus, post-ischaemic injection of GVS-111 demonstrated both cognition-restoring and neuroprotective properties. The cognition-restoring effect is probably based on an increase in neocortical and hippocampal neuronal plasticity. Neuroprotective effects of GVS-111 combine antioxidant activity with the ability to attenuate glutamate-provoked neurotoxicity and block voltage-gated ionic channels, i.e. the compound mitigates the main metabolic shifts involved in pathogenesis of brain ischaemia.
Three experiments were performed to investigate the effects of combining the active D-stereoisomer of CGP 37 849, i.e. the glutamatergic antagonist, CGP 40 116, with l-dopa, in mice that had undergone treatment with the neurotoxin, MPTP. In the first experiment, the decreased motor activity in MPTP-treated mice was alleviated by the administration of a low dose of l-dopa (5mg/kg, s.c.) together with a low dose of CGP 40 116 (30µg/kg). This dose was inactive in the control (saline-treated) mice. The highest dose of CGP 40 116 used (3000µg/kg) stimulated activity in the control mice. In Experiment 2, the inactive L-stereoisomer, i.e., CGP 40 117, was found to be inactive at doses (3 and 30µg/kg) effective with CGP 40 116. The effects of CGP 40 116 and l-dopa on the 24-h activity of mice tested under either day-night or night-day conditions, were more marked and longer lasting in the night-day condition. Taken together, the results from all three experiments show that CGP 40 116 in a dose range of 1-30µg/kg in combination with l-dopa (5mg/kg, s.c.) alleviated the reduced motor activity in MPTP-treated mice whereas higher doses of CGP 40 116 (100, 300, or 3000µg/kg) or lower doses (0.1 and 0.3µg/kg) were without effect. These experiments are interpreted as support for current views on glutamatergic-dopaminergic interactions in Parkinsonism and offer further evidence for the MPTP mouse model of the disease.
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a disorder characterized by unwanted and intrusive thoughts, images, or impulses and/or repetitive behavior. OCD is a major cause of disability; however, the genetic factors and pathophysiological mechanisms underlying this complex, heterogeneous disorder remain largely unknown. During the past decade, a number of putative mouse genetic models of OCD have been developed for the purpose of studying the neural mechanisms underlying this disorder and developing novel treatments. This review presents and evaluates these experimental preparations to date. Models using knockout or transgenic approaches, as well as those examining variation in genetically diverse populations, are evaluated and discussed.
The effects of CGS 12066B (3-14mg/kg), a putative 5-HT(1B) agonist, on 5-HT behavioral syndrome, motor activity and body temperature, were investigated in rats. The animals were well adapted to the experimental conditions before testing, and data sampling started at the same hour for each rat. The highest dose of CGS 12066B clearly reduced body temperature and induced flat body posture and hindlimb abduction. No significant change was seen in motor activity. The CGS 12066B-induced changes were not antagonized by 5-HT(1B) receptor antagonists, or antagonists at other 5-HT receptor. In fact, the 5-HT(1A) antagonist NAN-190 and especially the non-selective 5-HT antagonist methiothepin, with definite 5-HT(1B) receptor blocking properties, both potentiated the decrease in body temperature. The findings suggest that the behavioral and body temperature effects of CGS 12066B are not easily explained by 5-HT(1B) receptor stimulation, but may be mediated by activation of non-serotonergic mechanisms. Similar conclusions in studies with other 5-HT(1B) agonists suggest a common problem with such drugs.
It has recently been proposed that the "serenic" (antiaggressive) agents, fluprazine and eltoprazine, may enhance fear/anxiety reactions in laboratory rodents. In the present study, the influence of these compounds (1.25-10.0 mg/kg) on anxiety-related behaviour in male mice was examined in the elevated plus-maze test. For comparative purposes, the effects of 8-OH-DPAT (0.01-1.0 mg/kg) CGS 12066B (1.25-10 mg/kg), TFMPP (0.63-5.0 mg/kg) and mCPP (0.5-4.0 mg/kg) were also assessed. Behavioural analysis incorporated not only traditional parameters but also several novel measures of defensive behaviour (i.e. "risk assessment"). The selective 5-HT1A agonist 8-OH-DPAT produced effects only at 1.0 mg/kg, with evidence of an anxio-lytic/sedative action at this dose. In the absence of other behavioural changes, CGS 12066B (a selective 5-HT1B agonist) caused a preferential and dose-dependent (2.5-10.0 mg/kg) stimulation of closed arm entries, an effect also seen with low doses of TFMPP (0.63 mg/kg) and the serenics (1.25-2.5 mg/kg). In addition, both TFMPP and mCPP (5-HT1C/1B agonists) induced dose dependent anxiogenic-like effects over the dose ranges tested, with the most pronounced changes observed on measures of risk assessment. The profiles of fluprazine and eltoprazine on plus-maze behaviour were not only similar to one another but, on most parameters, were also remarkably like those observed with TFMPP and mCPP. These data question the behavioural selectivity of the serenics and further support the proposal that these compounds may potentiate anxiety. Findings are discussed in relation to underlying receptor mechanisms, and the utility of a more ethological approach to the analysis of behaviour on the elevated plus-maze.
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Dose-dependent effects of 7-OH-PIPAT and PD-128,907 on motor behaviors and place conditioning were examined in rats. Four 2-day conditioning trials were conducted over 8 consecutive days. On one day of each trial, animals received an injection of either saline, one of six doses of 7-OH-PIPAT (0.01-10.0 mg/kg), or one of five doses of PD-128,907 (0.01-1.0 mg/kg), and were placed into a distinct compartment for 40 min. On the other day, animals received an injection of saline and were placed into a different compartment for 40 min. Locomotion, sniffing, and yawning were measured following the first and last drug injections. Place conditioning was assessed the day following the last conditioning trial. None of the doses of 7-OH-PIPAT or 0-0.3 mg/kg PD-128,907 produced place conditioning. However, 1 mg/kg PD-128,907 produced conditioned place preference (CPP). Across doses, both 7-OH-PIPAT and PD-128,907 produced a U-shaped change in sniffing and locomotion and an inverted U-shaped change in yawning. Across time, lower doses produced a decrease in sniffing and locomotion and an increase in yawning that were evident immediately, whereas higher doses produced a biphasic change in that there was an initial decrease followed by an increase in sniffing and locomotion. Behaviors produced by both low and high doses were sensitized following repeated administration. PD-128,907 produced CPP and was more potent than 7-OH-PIPAT in altering motor behaviors, possibly due to its greater selectivity for the D3 receptor.