The present study was undertaken to investigate the involvement of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) type of glutamate receptors in the induction and maintenance of kindling generated by daily cocaine (35 mg/kg) injections to Swiss Webster mice. In addition, the regulation of NMDA receptor binding following the development of sensitization to horizontal locomotor activity produced by daily injections of a low dose of cocaine (15 mg/kg for 5 days) was investigated. Three days following the administration of the high dose of cocaine (35 mg/kg) a marked augmentation in cocaine-induced horizontal and vertical activities was observed (induction phase). Subsequently, after 10 days of cocaine administration, mice developed stage 5 seizures (Racine scale). Binding of [3H]CGP 39653 to the NMDA receptors revealed a marked increase in receptor densities in the striatum, amygdala and hippocampus associated with the induction phase. The elevation of NMDA receptor binding in the striatum and amygdala was sustained for 10 days following the induction phase. The pattern of altered NMDA receptor binding following the expression of cocaine kindled seizures was different. One day after the expression of kindled seizures NMDA receptor binding was elevated in striatum, amygdala, hippocampus and frontal cortex. However, only the elevation of NMDA receptor binding in the amygdala and hippocampus was sustained for 10 days following the expression of cocaine kindled seizures. In the brains of mice sensitized to the low dose of cocaine (15 mg/kg) no change in NMDA receptor binding was observed compared with control values. The present findings suggest the following: (a) The induction of cocaine kindling is associated with increased NMDA receptor binding activity in the striatum, amygdala and hippocampus; (b) the maintenance of cocaine kindling depends on increased NMDA receptor binding in the amygdala and hippocampus; (c) sensitization to cocaine-induced horizontal locomotor activity may be independent of elevation in NMDA receptor binding. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd.
- NMDA receptors
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Drug Discovery