Chronic GBR 12909 administration differentially alters prodynorphin gene expression compared to cocaine

Patrizia Romualdi, Claudio D'Addario, Sergio Ferri, Brian M. Cox, Sari Izenwasser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The effect of the selective dopamine uptake inhibitor 1-[2-[bis(4-flourophenyl)methoxy]ethyl]-4-[3-phenylpropyl]piperazine dihydrochloride (GBR 12909) was examined on prodynorphin gene expression. GBR 12909 or vehicle was continuously infused for 7 days via osmotic minipump, or injected daily into male rats. Both continuous infusions and daily injections of GBR 12909 produced significant decreases in prodynorphin expression in the hypothalamus (37% and 31% decreases, respectively). There were no significant changes in the caudate putamen, hippocampus or nucleus accumbens. One injection of GBR 12909 had no effects on prodynorphin expression in any of the brain regions studied, suggesting that the effect in the hypothalamus is not an acute effect. As previously reported for other treatment regimens, continuous infusion of cocaine produced a 35% significant decrease in the hypothalamus, consistent with the effects of GBR 12909. In contrast to GBR 12909, however, cocaine also produced a significant increase in prodynorphin expression in the caudate putamen. Thus, chronic inhibition of dopamine uptake can regulate prodynorphin expression in the hypothalamus. In contrast, the increase in the caudate putamen following cocaine administration may not be related to the inhibition of dopamine uptake, since it was not produced by a selective dopamine uptake inhibitor. These findings suggest that regulation of prodynorphin gene expression by cocaine in the caudate putamen may be mediated by the inhibition of norepinephrine or serotonin uptake, by a combination of effects on two or three monoamine transporters, or by a mechanism unrelated to transporter inhibition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-212
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Feb 16 2001


  • Cocaine
  • Dopamine transport
  • Dopamine uptake
  • Dynorphin
  • GBR 12909

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology


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