Accumbens Shell (accumben + shell)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Kinds of Accumbens Shell

  • nucleus accumben shell

  • Selected Abstracts

    PRECLINICAL STUDY: FULL ARTICLE: Effects of fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibition on neuronal responses to nicotine, cocaine and morphine in the nucleus accumbens shell and ventral tegmental area: involvement of PPAR-, nuclear receptors

    ADDICTION BIOLOGY, Issue 3 2010
    Antonio Luchicchi
    ABSTRACT The endocannabinoid system regulates neurotransmission in brain regions relevant to neurobiological and behavioral actions of addicting drugs. We recently demonstrated that inhibition by URB597 of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the main enzyme that degrades the endogenous cannabinoid N-acylethanolamine (NAE) anandamide and the endogenous non-cannabinoid NAEs oleoylethanolamide and palmitoylethanolamide, blocks nicotine-induced excitation of ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons and DA release in the shell of the nucleus accumbens (ShNAc), as well as nicotine-induced drug self-administration, conditioned place preference and relapse in rats. Here, we studied whether effects of FAAH inhibition on nicotine-induced changes in activity of VTA DA neurons were specific for nicotine or extended to two drugs of abuse acting through different mechanisms, cocaine and morphine. We also evaluated whether FAAH inhibition affects nicotine-, cocaine- or morphine-induced actions in the ShNAc. Experiments involved single-unit electrophysiological recordings from DA neurons in the VTA and medium spiny neurons in the ShNAc in anesthetized rats. We found that URB597 blocked effects of nicotine and cocaine in the ShNAc through activation of both surface cannabinoid CB1-receptors and alpha-type peroxisome proliferator-activated nuclear receptor. URB597 did not alter the effects of either cocaine or morphine on VTA DA neurons. These results show that the blockade of nicotine-induced excitation of VTA DA neurons, which we previously described, is selective for nicotine and indicate novel mechanisms recruited to regulate the effects of addicting drugs within the ShNAc of the brain reward system. [source]

    Prenatal restraint stress differentially modifies basal and stimulated dopamine and noradrenaline release in the nucleus accumbens shell: an ,in vivo' microdialysis study in adolescent and young adult rats

    Alessandra Silvagni
    Abstract Gestational stress [prenatal stress (PNS)] has been associated with low birth weight, preterm delivery, and higher vulnerability to psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, depression or attention deficit with hyperactivity disorder. The alteration of catecholamine transmission has been attributed a major role in the etiology of psychiatric disturbances. We investigated the effect of PNS on basal and stimulated dopamine and noradrenaline output in the nucleus accumbens of freely moving adolescent and young adult rats (30,35 and 60,70 postnatal days respectively) because of the importance of this area in drug dependence and possibly in psychiatric disorders that are treated with drugs that act on dopamine and noradrenaline transmission. Stimulation was obtained with intraperitoneal amphetamine (0.25 mg/kg) or subcutaneous nicotine (0.4 mg/kg). The results showed the following: (i) basal and amphetamine-stimulated dopamine output in adolescent and adult PNS rats is higher than in controls; (ii) nicotine-stimulated dopamine output is lower than in controls in adolescent but not in adult PNS rats; (iii) basal noradrenaline output is lower than in controls in adolescent but not in adult PNS rats; (iv) amphetamine-stimulated noradrenaline output is higher than in controls in adult but not in adolescent PNS rats; (v) nicotine-stimulated noradrenaline output in PNS rats is higher than in controls, although only in adults. These results show that PNS may produce a complex change in accumbal dopamine and noradrenaline transmission. We discuss the possibility that these changes might be correlated with the development of psychiatric disorders or with an increased vulnerability to drug addiction. [source]

    Oxytocin injected into the ventral tegmental area induces penile erection and increases extracellular dopamine in the nucleus accumbens and paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus of male rats

    Maria Rosaria Melis
    Abstract The neuropeptide oxytocin (20,100 ng), induces penile erection when injected unilaterally into the caudal but not rostral mesencephalic ventral tegmental area (VTA) of male Sprague,Dawley rats. Such pro-erectile effect started 30 min after treatment and was abolished by the prior injection of d(CH2)5Tyr(Me)2 -Orn8 -vasotocin (1 g), an oxytocin receptor antagonist injected into the same caudal ventral tegmental area or of haloperidol (1 g), a dopamine receptor antagonist, injected either into the nucleus accumbens shell (NAs) or into the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) ipsilateral to the injected ventral tegmental area. Penile erection was seen 15 min after the occurrence of, or concomitantly to, an increase in extracellular dopamine and its metabolite 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) in the dialysate obtained from the nucleus accumbens or the paraventricular nucleus, which was also abolished by d(CH2)5Tyr(Me)2 -Orn8 -vasotocin (1 g), injected into the ventral tegmental area before oxytocin. In the caudal ventral tegmental area oxytocin-containing axons/fibres (originating from the paraventricular nucleus) appeared to closely contact cell bodies of mesolimbic dopaminergic neurons retrogradely labelled with Fluorogold injected into the nucleus accumbens shell, suggesting that oxytocin effects are mediated by the activation of mesolimbic dopaminergic neurons, followed in turn by that of incerto-hypothalamic dopaminergic neurons impinging on oxytocinergic neurons mediating penile erection. As the stimulation of paraventricular dopamine receptors not only induces penile erection, but also increases mesolimbic dopamine neurotransmission by activating oxytocinergic neurons, these results provide further support for the existence of a neural circuit in which dopamine and oxytocin influence both the consummatory and motivational/rewarding aspects of sexual behaviour. [source]

    Stimulation of D1-like or D2 dopamine receptors in the shell, but not the core, of the nucleus accumbens reinstates cocaine-seeking behaviour in the rat

    Heath D. Schmidt
    Abstract Although increases in dopamine transmission in the brain are clearly involved in the reinstatement of cocaine seeking, the role of nucleus accumbens dopamine in cocaine priming-induced reinstatement remains controversial. The goal of these experiments was to evaluate the relative contributions of D1-like and D2-like dopamine receptors in the nucleus accumbens core and shell in the reinstatement of cocaine-seeking behaviour. Initially, rats were trained to press a lever for cocaine (0.25 mg, i.v.) using a fixed-ratio 5 (FR5) schedule of reinforcement. Responding was then extinguished by substituting saline for cocaine. During the reinstatement phase, subtype-specific dopamine receptor agonists were microinjected into the nucleus accumbens core or medial shell in order to assess their ability to induce cocaine seeking. Administration of the D1/D5 dopamine receptor agonist SKF-81297 (1.0 g) into the nucleus accumbens shell, but not core, reinstated drug-seeking behaviour. Similarly, microinjection of quinpirole (3.0 g), a D2/D3 dopamine receptor agonist, into the nucleus accumbens shell and not core reinstated drug-seeking behaviour. In contrast, administration of the D3- or D4-preferring dopamine receptor agonists PD 128,907 (1.5 and 3.0 g) and PD 168,077 (0.3 and 3.0 g), respectively, did not promote reinstatement when administered into either the core or the shell. Taken together, these results indicate that activation of D1/D5 or D2 dopamine receptors, in the limbic shell subregion of the nucleus accumbens but not the basal ganglia-orientated accumbens core, promotes the reinstatement of cocaine-seeking behaviour. [source]

    Silencing dopamine D3 -receptors in the nucleus accumbens shell in vivo induces changes in cocaine-induced hyperlocomotion

    Amine Bahi
    Abstract The dopamine D3 receptor (D3R) is an important pharmacotherapeutic target for its potential role in psychiatric disorders and drug dependence. To further explore its function in rats, a regulatable lentivirus, Lenti-D3, holding the rat D3R cDNA, has been constructed as well as three nonregulatable lentiviruses, Lenti-D3-siRNA1, Lenti-D3-siRNA2 and Lenti-D3-siRNA3, expressing small hairpin RNAs, aimed at silencing D3R expression and specifically targeted against different regions of the D3R mRNA. In vitro, Lenti-D3 expressed D3R and could efficiently be blocked with Lenti-D3-Sils. These viruses were stereotaxically injected into the shell part of the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and effects of passive cocaine delivery on locomotor activity were assessed. Manipulations of D3R levels induced changes in the locomotor stimulant effects of cocaine as compared to control treatment. Suppression of dopamine (DA) D3R in the NAcc by means of local knockdown (with Lenti-D3-Sils) increased locomotor stimulant effects, whereas its overexpression with Lenti-D3 drastically reduced them. The latter effects could be reversed when animals were fed doxycycline, which prevented lentiviral-mediated DA D3R overexpression in the NAcc. Gene expression assessed by quantitative RT-PCR confirmed very efficient gene knockdown in vivo in animals treated with Lenti-D3-Sils (> 93% silencing of D3R gene). Thus D3R expression significantly contributes to behavioural changes associated with chronic cocaine delivery. [source]

    Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization tissue profiling of secretoneurin in the nucleus accumbens shell from cocaine-sensitized rats

    Joachim D. Uys
    Abstract Proteins in the nucleus accumbens mediate many cocaine-induced behaviors. In an effort to measure changes in nucleus accumbens protein expression as potential biomarkers for addiction, coronal tissue sections were obtained from rats that developed behavioral sensitization after daily administration of cocaine, or from daily saline-treated controls. The tissue sections were subjected to matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass spectrometry (MS) profiling and tissue imaging. For profiling experiments, brain sections were manually spotted with matrix over the nucleus accumbens, a brain region known to regulate cocaine sensitization. Summed mass spectra (10 000 laser shots, grid) were acquired and spectra were aligned to reference peaks. Using bioinformatics tools, eight spectral features were found to be altered by cocaine treatment. Based on additional sequencing experiments with MALDI tandem MS and database searches of measured masses, secretoneurin (m/z 3653) was identified as having an increased expression. In addition, the distribution of m/z 3653 in the nucleus accumbens was determined by MALDI tissue imaging, and the increased expression of its precursor protein, secretogranin II, was verified by immunoblotting. Copyright 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Modifications in DARPP-32 phosphorylation pattern after repeated palatable food consumption undergo rapid habituation in the nucleus accumbens shell of non-food-deprived rats

    Barbara Danielli
    Abstract In non-food-deprived rats a palatable meal induces a transient increase in dopamine output in the prefrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens shell and core; habituation to this response develops with a second palatable meal, selectively in the shell, unless animals are food-deprived. A palatable meal also induces time-dependent modifications in the dopamine and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein of Mr 32 000 (DARPP-32) phosphorylation pattern that are prevented when SCH 23390, a selective dopamine D1 receptor antagonist, is administered shortly after the meal. This study investigated whether dopaminergic habituation in the shell had a counterpart in DARPP-32 phosphorylation changes. In non-food-deprived rats, two consecutive palatable meals were followed by similar sequences of modifications in DARPP-32 phosphorylation levels in the prefrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens core, while changes after the second meal were blunted in the shell. In food-deprived rats two consecutive meals also induced similar phosphorylation changes in the shell. Finally, SCH 23390 administered shortly after the first palatable meal in non-food-deprived rats inhibited DARPP-32 phosphorylation changes in response to the first meal, and prevented the habituation to a second meal in terms of dopaminergic response and DARPP-32 phosphorylation changes. Thus, dopamine D1 receptor stimulation plays a role in the development of habituation. [source]

    Morphine withdrawal produces circadian rhythm alterations of clock genes in mesolimbic brain areas and peripheral blood mononuclear cells in rats

    Su-xia Li
    Abstract Previous studies have shown that clock genes are expressed in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus, other brain regions, and peripheral tissues. Various peripheral oscillators can run independently of the SCN. However, no published studies have reported changes in the expression of clock genes in the rat central nervous system and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) after withdrawal from chronic morphine treatment. Rats were administered with morphine twice daily at progressively increasing doses for 7 days; spontaneous withdrawal signs were recorded 14 h after the last morphine administration. Then, brain and blood samples were collected at each of eight time points (every 3 h: ZT 9; ZT 12; ZT 15; ZT 18; ZT 21; ZT 0; ZT 3; ZT 6) to examine expression of rPER1 and rPER2 and rCLOCK. Rats presented obvious morphine withdrawal signs, such as teeth chattering, shaking, exploring, ptosis, and weight loss. In morphine-treated rats, rPER1 and rPER2 expression in the SCN, basolateral amygdala, and nucleus accumbens shell showed robust circadian rhythms that were essentially identical to those in control rats. However, robust circadian rhythm in rPER1 expression in the ventral tegmental area was completely phase-reversed in morphine-treated rats. A blunting of circadian oscillations of rPER1 expression occurred in the central amygdala, hippocampus, nucleus accumbens core, and PBMCs and rPER2 expression occurred in the central amygdala, prefrontal cortex, nucleus accumbens core, and PBMCs in morphine-treated rats compared with controls. rCLOCK expression in morphine-treated rats showed no rhythmic change, identical to control rats. These findings indicate that withdrawal from chronic morphine treatment resulted in desynchronization from the SCN rhythm, with blunting of rPER1 and rPER2 expression in reward-related neurocircuits and PBMCs. [source]

    Anandamide administration alone and after inhibition of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) increases dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens shell in rats

    Marcello Solinas
    Abstract Although endogenous cannabinoid systems have been implicated in the modulation of the rewarding effects of abused drugs and food, little is known about the direct effects of endogenous ligands for cannabinoid receptors on brain reward processes. Here we show for the first time that the intravenous administration of anandamide, an endogenous ligand for cannabinoid receptors, and its longer-lasting synthetic analog methanandamide, increase the extracellular dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens shell of awake, freely moving rats, an effect characteristic of most drugs abused by humans. Anandamide produced two distinctly different effects on dopamine levels: (1) a rapid, transient increase that was blocked by the cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist rimonabant, but not by the vanilloid VR1 receptor antagonist capsazepine, and was magnified and prolonged by the fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) enzyme inhibitor, URB597; (2) a smaller delayed and long-lasting increase, not sensitive to CB1, VR1 or FAAH blockade. Both effects were blocked by infusing either tetrodotoxin (TTX, 1 m) or calcium-free Ringer's solution through the microdialysis probe, demonstrating that they were dependent on the physiologic activation of dopaminergic neurotransmission. Thus, these results indicate that anandamide, through the activation of the mesolimbic dopaminergic system, participates in the signaling of brain reward processes. [source]

    Long-term behavioral and neurochemical effects of chronic stress exposure in rats

    Simona Mangiavacchi
    Rats exposed to acute unavoidable stress develop a deficit in escaping avoidable aversive stimuli that lasts as long as unavoidable stress exposure is repeated. A 3-week exposure to unavoidable stress also reduces dopamine (DA) output in the nucleus accumbens shell (NAcS). This study showed that a 7-day exposure to unavoidable stress induced in rats an escape deficit and a decrease in extraneuronal DA basal concentration in the NAcS. Moreover, animals had reduced DA and serotonin (5-HT) accumulation after cocaine administration in the medial pre-frontal cortex (mPFC) and NAcS, compared with control animals. After a 3-week exposure to unavoidable stress, escape deficit and reduced DA output in the NAcS were still significant at day 14 after the last stress administration. In the mPFC we observed: (i) a short-term reduction in DA basal levels that was back to control values at day 14; (ii) a decrease in DA accumulation at day 3 followed by a significant increase beyond control values at day 14; (iii) a significant reduction in 5-HT extraneuronal basal levels at day 3, but not at day 14. Finally, a significant decrease in 5-HT accumulation following cocaine administration was present in the NAcS and mPFC at day 3, but not at day 14. In conclusion, a long-term stress exposure induced long-lasting behavioral sequelae associated with reproducible neurochemical modifications. [source]

    Region-Specific Induction of FosB/,FosB by Voluntary Alcohol Intake: Effects of Naltrexone

    ALCOHOLISM, Issue 10 2010
    Jing Li
    Background:, ,FosB is the best characterized transcription factor induced by chronic stimulation. Although previous studies have demonstrated that chronic passive ethanol exposure alters ,FosB immunoreactivity (IR), the effect of chronic voluntary ethanol consumption on ,FosB remains unknown. Furthermore, although previous studies have demonstrated that the opioid antagonist naltrexone reduces alcohol consumption in clinical and preclinical settings, the effect of naltrexone on FosB/,FosB has not been explored. Here, we examined the effects of chronic voluntary ethanol intake and naltrexone on FosB/,FosB IR in striatal region and prefrontal cortex, and the effect of naltrexone on voluntary ethanol intake. Methods:, We utilized immunohistochemistry to define the changes in FosB/,FosB IR induced by chronic voluntary ethanol intake under a two-bottle intermittent access of 20% ethanol model and by systematic administration (intraperitoneal injection) of naltrexone in Sprague-Dawley rats. Results:, Chronic (15 drinking sessions in 35 days) voluntary ethanol intake robustly induces FosB/,FosB IR in nucleus accumbens core, dorsolateral striatum, and orbitofrontal cortex, but not in nucleus accumbens shell, dorsomedial striatum, and medial prefrontal cortex. Systemic administration of naltrexone for 6 days significantly reduced voluntary ethanol consumption and FosB/,FosB IR induced by chronic voluntary ethanol intake. Conclusion:, Our results suggest that chronic voluntary ethanol intake induces FosB/,FosB IR in a subregion-specific manner which involves the activation of endogenous opioid system. [source]

    Effect of Chronic Ethanol on Enkephalin in the Hypothalamus and Extra-Hypothalamic Areas

    ALCOHOLISM, Issue 5 2010
    Guo-Qing Chang
    Background:, Ethanol may be consumed for reasons such as reward, anxiety reduction, or caloric content, and the opioid enkephalin (ENK) appears to be involved in many of these functions. Previous studies in Sprague,Dawley rats have demonstrated that ENK in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) is stimulated by voluntary consumption of ethanol. This suggests that this opioid peptide may be involved in promoting the drinking of ethanol, consistent with our recent findings that PVN injections of ENK analogs stimulate ethanol intake. To broaden our understanding of how this peptide functions throughout the brain to promote ethanol intake, we measured, in rats trained to drink 9% ethanol, the expression of the ENK gene in additional brain areas outside the hypothalamus, namely, the ventral tegmental area (VTA), nucleus accumbens shell (NAcSh) and core (NAcC), medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), and central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA). Methods:, In the first experiment, the brains of rats chronically drinking 1 g/kg/d ethanol, 3 g/kg/d ethanol, or water were examined using real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). In the second experiment, a more detailed, anatomic analysis of changes in gene expression, in rats chronically drinking 3 g/kg/d ethanol compared to water, was performed using radiolabeled in situ hybridization (ISH). The third experiment employed digoxigenin-labeled ISH (DIG) to examine changes in the density of cells expressing ENK and, for comparison, dynorphin (DYN) in rats chronically drinking 3 g/kg/d ethanol versus water. Results:, With qRT-PCR, the rats chronically drinking ethanol plus water compared to water alone showed significantly higher levels of ENK mRNA, not only in the PVN but also in the VTA, NAcSh, NAcC, and mPFC, although not in the CeA. Using radiolabeled ISH, levels of ENK mRNA in rats drinking ethanol were found to be elevated in all areas examined, including the CeA. The experiment using DIG confirmed this effect of ethanol, showing an increase in density of ENK-expressing cells in all areas studied. It additionally revealed a similar change in DYN mRNA in the PVN, mPFC, and CeA, although not in the NAcSh or NAcC. Conclusions:, While distinguishing the NAc as a site where ENK and DYN respond differentially, these findings lead us to propose that these opioids, in response to voluntary ethanol consumption, are generally elevated in extra-hypothalamic as well as hypothalamic areas, possibly to carry out specific area-related functions that, in turn, drive animals to further consume ethanol. These functions include calorie ingestion in the PVN, reward and motivation in the VTA and NAcSh, response-reinforcement learning in the NAcC, stress reduction in the CeA, and behavioral control in the mPFC. [source]