Science.gov

Sample records for opioid receptor modulation

  1. Role of the mu opioid receptor in opioid modulation of immune function

    PubMed Central

    Ninković, Jana; Roy, Sabita

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Endogenous opioids are synthesized in vivo in order to modulate pain mechanisms and inflammatory pathways. Endogenous and exogenous opioids mediate analgesia in response to painful stimuli by binding to opioid receptors on neuronal cells. However, wide distribution of opioid receptors on tissues and organ systems outside the CNS, such as the cells of the immune system, indicate that opioids are capable of exerting additional effects in the periphery, such as immunomodulation. The increased prevalence of infections in opioid abusers based epidemiological studies further highlights the immunosuppressive effects of opioids. In spite of their many debilitating side effects, prescription opioids remain a gold standard for treatment of chronic pain. Therefore, given the prevalence of opioid use and abuse, opioid mediated immune suppression presents a serious concern in our society today. It is imperative to understand the mechanisms by which exogenous opioids modulate immune processes. In this review we will discuss the role of opioid receptors and their ligands in mediating immune suppressive functions. We will summarize recent studies on direct and indirect opioid modulation of the cells of the immune system as well as the role of opioids in exacerbation of certain disease states. PMID:22170499

  2. Mu-opioid receptors modulate the stability of dendritic spines

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Dezhi; Lin, Hang; Law, Ping Yee; Loh, Horace H.

    2005-01-01

    Opioids classically regulate the excitability of neurons by suppressing synaptic GABA release from inhibitory neurons. Here, we report a role for opioids in modulating excitatory synaptic transmission. By activating ubiquitously clustered μ-opioid receptor (MOR) in excitatory synapses, morphine caused collapse of preexisting dendritic spines and decreased synaptic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors. Meanwhile, the opioid antagonist naloxone increased the density of spines. Chronic treatment with morphine decreased the density of dendritic spines even in the presence of Tetrodotoxin, a sodium channel blocker, indicating that the morphine's effect was not caused by altered activity in neural network through suppression of GABA release. The effect of morphine on dendritic spines was absent in transgenic mice lacking MORs and was blocked by CTOP (D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-ThrNH2), a μ-receptor antagonist. These data together with others suggest that endogenous opioids and/or constitutive activity of MORs participate in maintaining normal morphology and function of spines, challenging the classical model of opioids. Abnormal alteration of spines may occur in drug addiction when opioid receptors are overactivated by exogenous opiates. PMID:15659552

  3. Ignavine: a novel allosteric modulator of the μ opioid receptor

    PubMed Central

    Ohbuchi, Katsuya; Miyagi, Chika; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Mizuhara, Yasuharu; Mizuno, Keita; Omiya, Yuji; Yamamoto, Masahiro; Warabi, Eiji; Sudo, Yuka; Yokoyama, Akinobu; Miyano, Kanako; Hirokawa, Takatsugu; Uezono, Yasuhito

    2016-01-01

    Processed Aconiti tuber (PAT) is used to treat pain associated with various disorders. Although it has been demonstrated that the κ opioid receptor (KOR) signaling pathway is a mediator of the analgesic effect of PAT, active components affecting opioid signaling have not yet been identified. In this study, we explored candidate components of PAT by pharmacokinetic analysis and identified ignavine, which is a different structure from aconitine alkaloids. A receptor binding assay of opioid receptors showed that ignavine specifically binds the μ opioid receptor (MOR), not the KOR. Receptor internalization assay in MOR-expressing cell lines revealed that ignavine augmented the responses produced by D-Ala(2)-N-Me-Phe(4)-Gly-ol(5)-enkephalin (DAMGO), a representative MOR agonist, at a low concentration and inhibited it at a higher concentration. Ignavine also exerted positive modulatory activity for DAMGO, endomorphin-1 and morphine in cAMP assay. Additionally, ignavine alone showed an analgesic effect in vivo. In silico simulation analysis suggested that ignavine would induce a unique structural change distinguished from those induced by a representative MOR agonist and antagonist. These data collectively suggest the possibility that ignavine could be a novel allosteric modulator of the MOR. The present results may open the way for the development of a novel pain management strategy. PMID:27530869

  4. Discovery of positive allosteric modulators and silent allosteric modulators of the μ-opioid receptor

    PubMed Central

    Burford, Neil T.; Clark, Mary J.; Wehrman, Tom S.; Gerritz, Samuel W.; Banks, Martyn; O’Connell, Jonathan; Traynor, John R.; Alt, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    μ-Opioid receptors are among the most studied G protein-coupled receptors because of the therapeutic value of agonists, such as morphine, that are used to treat chronic pain. However, these drugs have significant side effects, such as respiratory suppression, constipation, allodynia, tolerance, and dependence, as well as abuse potential. Efforts to fine tune pain control while alleviating the side effects of drugs, both physiological and psychological, have led to the development of a wide variety of structurally diverse agonist ligands for the μ-opioid receptor, as well as compounds that target κ- and δ-opioid receptors. In recent years, the identification of allosteric ligands for some G protein-coupled receptors has provided breakthroughs in obtaining receptor subtype-selectivity that can reduce the overall side effect profiles of a potential drug. However, positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) can also have the specific advantage of only modulating the activity of the receptor when the orthosteric agonist occupies the receptor, thus maintaining spatial and temporal control of receptor signaling in vivo. This second advantage of allosteric modulators may yield breakthroughs in opioid receptor research and could lead to drugs with improved side-effect profiles or fewer tolerance and dependence issues compared with orthosteric opioid receptor agonists. Here, we describe the discovery and characterization of μ-opioid receptor PAMs and silent allosteric modulators, identified from high-throughput screening using a β-arrestin–recruitment assay. PMID:23754417

  5. Opioid Receptors.

    PubMed

    Stein, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    Opioids are the oldest and most potent drugs for the treatment of severe pain. Their clinical application is undisputed in acute (e.g., postoperative) and cancer pain, but their long-term use in chronic pain has met increasing scrutiny. This article reviews mechanisms underlying opioid analgesia and other opioid actions. It discusses the structure, function, and plasticity of opioid receptors; the central and peripheral sites of analgesic actions and side effects; endogenous and exogenous opioid receptor ligands; and conventional and novel opioid compounds. Challenging clinical situations, such as the tension between chronic pain and addiction, are also illustrated.

  6. Fast Modulation of μ-Opioid Receptor (MOR) Recycling Is Mediated by Receptor Agonists*

    PubMed Central

    Roman-Vendrell, Cristina; Yu, Y. Joy; Yudowski, Guillermo Ariel

    2012-01-01

    The μ-opioid receptor (MOR) is a member of the G protein-coupled receptor family and the main target of endogenous opioid neuropeptides and morphine. Upon activation by ligands, MORs are rapidly internalized via clathrin-coated pits in heterologous cells and dissociated striatal neurons. After initial endocytosis, resensitized receptors recycle back to the cell surface by vesicular delivery for subsequent cycles of activation. MOR trafficking has been linked to opioid tolerance after acute exposure to agonist, but it is also involved in the resensitization process. Several studies describe the regulation and mechanism of MOR endocytosis, but little is known about the recycling of resensitized receptors to the cell surface. To study this process, we induced internalization of MOR with [d-Ala2, N-Me-Phe4, Gly5-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO) and morphine and imaged in real time single vesicles recycling receptors to the cell surface. We determined single vesicle recycling kinetics and the number of receptors contained in them. Then we demonstrated that rapid vesicular delivery of recycling MORs to the cell surface was mediated by the actin-microtubule cytoskeleton. Recycling was also dependent on Rab4, Rab11, and the Ca2+-sensitive motor protein myosin Vb. Finally, we showed that recycling is acutely modulated by the presence of agonists and the levels of cAMP. Our work identifies a novel trafficking mechanism that increases the number of cell surface MORs during acute agonist exposure, effectively reducing the development of opioid tolerance. PMID:22378794

  7. Fast modulation of μ-opioid receptor (MOR) recycling is mediated by receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Roman-Vendrell, Cristina; Yu, Y Joy; Yudowski, Guillermo Ariel

    2012-04-27

    The μ-opioid receptor (MOR) is a member of the G protein-coupled receptor family and the main target of endogenous opioid neuropeptides and morphine. Upon activation by ligands, MORs are rapidly internalized via clathrin-coated pits in heterologous cells and dissociated striatal neurons. After initial endocytosis, resensitized receptors recycle back to the cell surface by vesicular delivery for subsequent cycles of activation. MOR trafficking has been linked to opioid tolerance after acute exposure to agonist, but it is also involved in the resensitization process. Several studies describe the regulation and mechanism of MOR endocytosis, but little is known about the recycling of resensitized receptors to the cell surface. To study this process, we induced internalization of MOR with [D-Ala(2), N-Me-Phe(4), Gly(5)-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO) and morphine and imaged in real time single vesicles recycling receptors to the cell surface. We determined single vesicle recycling kinetics and the number of receptors contained in them. Then we demonstrated that rapid vesicular delivery of recycling MORs to the cell surface was mediated by the actin-microtubule cytoskeleton. Recycling was also dependent on Rab4, Rab11, and the Ca(2+)-sensitive motor protein myosin Vb. Finally, we showed that recycling is acutely modulated by the presence of agonists and the levels of cAMP. Our work identifies a novel trafficking mechanism that increases the number of cell surface MORs during acute agonist exposure, effectively reducing the development of opioid tolerance.

  8. The mu (μ) and delta (δ) opioid receptors modulate boar sperm motility.

    PubMed

    Vicente-Carrillo, Alejandro; Álvarez-Rodríguez, Manuel; Rodríguez-Martínez, Heriberto

    2016-08-01

    Endogenous and exogenous opioids modulate reproductive functions in target cells via opioid receptors (μ, δ, and κ). Sperm motility is a metric of gamete functionality, and serves as a suitable parameter for in vitro drug-induced toxicity assays. This study identifies the presence and location of opioid receptors in pig spermatozoa as well as their functional response after in vitro challenge with known agonists (morphine [μ]; [D-Pen 2,5]-enkephanile [δ]; and U 50488 [κ]) and antagonists (naloxone [μ]; naltrindole [δ]; and nor-binaltrorphimine [κ]). Only the μ- and δ-opioid receptors were present in the boar sperm plasma membrane, overlying the acrosome, neck, and principal piece. Challenge experiments with agonists and antagonists identified both μ- and δ-opioid receptors as regulators of sperm kinematics, wherein μ maintains or increases sperm movement whereas δ decreases sperm motility over time. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 83: 724-734, 2016 © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Opioid modulation of immunocompetence: Receptor characterization and second messenger involvement

    SciTech Connect

    Hemmick, L.M.

    1989-01-01

    The purpose of this thesis was to examine the effects of opioids on several indices of immunocompetence, determined the receptor specificity of these effects, and ascertain whether the actions of opioids on lymphocytes could be correlated with activation of second messenger systems. By measuring {sup 45}Ca{sup 2+} uptake into lymphocytes, it was demonstrated that {beta}-endorphin 1-31 ({beta}-END 1-31) enhanced rat thymocyte Ca{sup 2+} uptake in response to concanavalin A (Con A) but not phytohemagglutinin (PHA). Related opioid peptides and alkaloids were unable to mimic the effect, and naloxone did not block it, suggesting that {beta}-END 1-31 acted by binding to specific, non-opioid receptors on the thymocytes. Rat splenocyte Con A-stimulated Ca{sup 2+} uptake was not affected by {beta}-END 1-31. {beta}-END 1-31 did not affect basal Ca{sup 2+} uptake by either cell type. Using ({sup 3}H)thymidine uptake as an index of lymphocyte proliferation, {beta}-END 1-31 and several related opioid peptides reversed prostaglandin E{sub 1} (PGE{sub 1}) suppression of rat lymph node cell Con A- and PHA-stimulated proliferation. Naloxone did not block the reversal. {beta}-END 1-31 was unable to reverse forskolin and cholera toxin suppression of proliferation, indicating that the lowering of cyclic AMP levels was not the mechanism involved. Verapamil inhibition of proliferation was also not reversed by {beta}-END 1-31, suggesting that promotion of Ca{sup 2+} influx was not a major mechanism involved.

  10. Modulation of brain opioid receptors by zinc and histidine

    SciTech Connect

    Hanissian, S.H.

    1988-01-01

    The effect of zinc and several trace elements was studied on the binding of the opioid receptor antagonist ({sup 3}H)-naloxone and the agonists ({sup 3}H)-DAGO, ({sup 3}H)-DSTLE, and ({sup 3}H)-EKC, specific for the mu, delta and kappa receptors, respectively, in several areas of the rat brain. Physiological concentrations of zinc were inhibitory to the binding of naloxone, DAGO, and EKC, whereas delta receptors were insensitive to this inhibition. Copper, cadmium, and mercury also inhibited the binding of all the ligands studied to their receptors. Histidine was most effective in preventing the inhibitory effects of zinc and copper, whereas it was less effective on cadmium, and without any effect on the inhibit was less effective on cadmium, and without any effect on the inhibition caused by mercury. Its metabolites histamine and imidazoleacetic acid, and also citrate were ineffective. Magnesium and manganese were stimulatory to opioid receptor binding, whereas cobalt and nickel had dual effects. Concentrations of zinc less that its IC{sub 50} totally prevented the stimulatory effects of magnesium and manganese on the mu and delta receptors on which zinc alone had no effects. The reducing reagents dithiothreitol and B-mercaptoethanol partially protected against zinc inhibition, and the oxidizing reagent dithiobisnitrobenzoic acid even potentiated the inhibitory effects of zinc on DSTLE and DAGO binding, although to different extents.

  11. Proposed Mode of Binding and Action of Positive Allosteric Modulators at Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Available crystal structures of opioid receptors provide a high-resolution picture of ligand binding at the primary (“orthosteric”) site, that is, the site targeted by endogenous ligands. Recently, positive allosteric modulators of opioid receptors have also been discovered, but their modes of binding and action remain unknown. Here, we use a metadynamics-based strategy to efficiently sample the binding process of a recently discovered positive allosteric modulator of the δ-opioid receptor, BMS-986187, in the presence of the orthosteric agonist SNC-80, and with the receptor embedded in an explicit lipid–water environment. The dynamics of BMS-986187 were enhanced by biasing the potential acting on the ligand–receptor distance and ligand–receptor interaction contacts. Representative lowest-energy structures from the reconstructed free-energy landscape revealed two alternative ligand binding poses at an allosteric site delineated by transmembrane (TM) helices TM1, TM2, and TM7, with some participation of TM6. Mutations of amino acid residues at these proposed allosteric sites were found to either affect the binding of BMS-986187 or its ability to modulate the affinity and/or efficacy of SNC-80. Taken together, these combined experimental and computational studies provide the first atomic-level insight into the modulation of opioid receptor binding and signaling by allosteric modulators. PMID:26841170

  12. Positive allosteric modulators of the μ-opioid receptor: a novel approach for future pain medications

    PubMed Central

    Burford, N T; Traynor, J R; Alt, A

    2015-01-01

    Morphine and other agonists of the μ-opioid receptor are used clinically for acute and chronic pain relief and are considered to be the gold standard for pain medication. However, these opioids also have significant side effects, which are also mediated via activation of the μ-opioid receptor. Since the latter half of the twentieth century, researchers have sought to tease apart the mechanisms underlying analgesia, tolerance and dependence, with the hope of designing drugs with fewer side effects. These efforts have revolved around the design of orthosteric agonists with differing pharmacokinetic properties and/or selectivity profiles for the different opioid receptor types. Recently, μ-opioid receptor-positive allosteric modulators (μ-PAMs) were identified, which bind to a (allosteric) site on the μ-opioid receptor separate from the orthosteric site that binds an endogenous agonist. These allosteric modulators have little or no detectable functional activity when bound to the receptor in the absence of orthosteric agonist, but can potentiate the activity of bound orthosteric agonist, seen as an increase in apparent potency and/or efficacy of the orthosteric agonist. In this review, we describe the potential advantages that a μ-PAM approach might bring to the design of novel therapeutics for pain that may lack the side effects currently associated with opioid therapy. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24460691

  13. Opioid receptor delta as a global modulator of skin differentiation and barrier function repair.

    PubMed

    Chajra, H; Amstutz, B; Schweikert, K; Auriol, D; Redziniak, G; Lefèvre, F

    2015-08-01

    The aims of this study were to confirm the properties of selective agonist peptide (Rubixyl) contained in the spinach towards opioid receptor delta. In fact, agonist properties of both spinach peptides (Rubiscolin-5 and Rubixyl) towards opioid receptor delta were demonstrated by Zang et al., but their effects on the other opioid receptors were not studied [1]. We also studied the expression of opioid receptor delta in epidermis under normal and stress condition (inflammatory) and its role in epidermis homeostasis under stress condition in vitro and in vivo. Agonist properties studies were performed using functional agonist cellular model containing human opioid receptors. Opioid receptor delta expression and epidermis homeostasis were studied on human reconstructed epidermis under normal and stress conditions (inflammatory stress) using gene expression (RT-qPCR) and protein expression analysis (immunohistological analysis). Skin repair properties of opioid receptor delta agonist were based on the following parameters TEWL (trans epidermal water loss, hydration and wrinkle depth at periocular and perilabial area) on human volunteers having either intrinsic ageing (more than 40 years old and non-smoker group) and both intrinsic ageing and extrinsic ageing (more than 40 years old and smoker group). We have demonstrated that the Rubixyl peptide is a specific agonist of opioid receptor delta. We have demonstrated that opioid receptor delta expression is modulated under inflammatory condition. The agonist Rubixyl was able to block the depletion of opioid receptor delta seen under inflammatory condition in reconstructed human epidermis. Inflammatory conditions lead to the unbalanced gene and protein expressions of markers involved in epidermis integrity and barrier function properties. The treatment of human reconstructed epidermis with the agonist Rubixyl leads to the normalization of unbalanced gene and protein expressions. In vivo study has confirmed the

  14. Opioids and clonidine modulate cytokine production and opioid receptor expression in neonatal immune cells.

    PubMed

    Chavez-Valdez, R; Kovell, L; Ahlawat, R; McLemore, G L; Wills-Karp, M; Gauda, E B

    2013-05-01

    Opioids and clonidine, used in for sedation, analgesia and control of opioid withdrawal in neonates, directly or indirectly activate opioid receptors (OPRs) expressed in immune cells. Therefore, our objective is to study how clinically relevant concentrations of different opioids and clonidine change cytokine levels in cultured whole blood from preterm and full-term infants. Using blood from preterm (≤ 30 weeks gestational age (GA), n=7) and full-term ( ≥ 37 weeks GA, n=19) infants, we investigated the changes in cytokine profile (IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12p70 and TNF-α), cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels and μ-, δ- and κ- opioid receptor (OPR) gene and protein expression, following in-vitro exposure to morphine, methadone, fentanyl or clonidine at increasing concentrations ranging from 0 to 1 mM. Following lipopolysaccharide activation, IL-10 levels were 146-fold greater in cultured blood from full-term than from preterm infants. Morphine and methadone, but not fentanyl, at >10(-5) M decreased all tested cytokines except IL-8. In contrast, clonidine at <10(-9) M increased IL-6, while at >10(-5) M increased IL-1β and decreased TNF-α levels. All cytokine changes followed the same patterns in preterm and full-term infant cultured blood and matched increases in cAMP levels. All three μ-, δ- and κ-OPR genes were expressed in mononuclear cells (MNC) from preterm and full-term infants. Morphine, methadone and clonidine, but not fentanyl, at >10(-5)M decreased the expression of μ-OPR, but not δ- or κ-OPRs. Generalized cytokine suppression along with downregulation of μ-OPR expression observed in neonatal MNC exposed to morphine and methadone at clinically relevant concentrations contrast with the modest effects observed with fentanyl and clonidine. Therefore, we speculate that fentanyl and clonidine may be safer therapeutic choices for sedation and control of opioid withdrawal and pain in neonates.

  15. Opioids and clonidine modulate cytokine production and opioid receptor expression in neonatal immune cells

    PubMed Central

    Chavez-Valdez, Raul; Kovell, Lara; Ahlawat, Rajni; McLemore, Gabrielle L.; Wills-Karp, Marsha; Gauda, Estelle B.

    2013-01-01

    Objective Opioids and clonidine, used in for sedation, analgesia and control of opioid withdrawal in neonates, directly or indirectly activate opioid receptors expressed in immune cells. Therefore, our objective is to study how clinically relevant concentrations of different opioids and clonidine change cytokine levels in cultured whole blood from preterm and full-term infants. Study design Using blood from preterm (≤ 30 weeks gestational age, n=7) and full-term (≥37 weeks GA, n=19) infants, we investigated the changes in cytokine profile (IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12p70, and TNF-α), cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels and μ-, δ-, and κ- opioid receptor (OPR) gene and protein expression following in-vitro exposure to morphine, methadone, fentanyl, or clonidine at increasing concentrations ranging from 0 to 1 mM. Results Following LPS activation, IL-10 levels were 146-fold greater in cultured blood from full-term than from preterm infants. Morphine and methadone, but not fentanyl, at >10-5M decreased all tested cytokines except IL-8. In contrast, clonidine at <10-9M increased IL-6, while at >10-5M increased IL-1β and decreased TNF-α levels. All cytokine changes followed the same patterns in preterm and full-term infant cultured blood and matched increases in cAMP levels. All three μ-, δ- and κ-OPR genes were expressed in mononuclear cells from preterm and full-term infants. Morphine, methadone and clonidine, but not fentanyl, at >10-5M decreased the expression of μ-OPR, but not δ- or κ-OPRs. Conclusion Generalized cytokine suppression along with downregulation of μ-OPR expression observed in neonatal mononuclear cells exposed to morphine and methadone at clinically relevant concentrations contrast with the modest effects observed with fentanyl and clonidine. Therefore, we speculate that fentanyl and clonidine may be safer therapeutic choices for sedation and control of opioid withdrawal and pain in neonates. PMID:23047422

  16. Opioid receptor heteromers in analgesia

    PubMed Central

    Costantino, Cristina M.; Gomes, Ivone; Stockton, Steven D.; Lim, Maribel P.; Devi, Lakshmi A.

    2013-01-01

    Opiates such as morphine and fentanyl, a major class of analgesics used in the clinical management of pain, exert their effects through the activation of opioid receptors. Opioids are among the most commonly prescribed and frequently abused drugs in the USA; however, the prolonged use of opiates often leads to the development of tolerance and addiction. Although blockade of opioid receptors with antagonists such as naltrexone and naloxone can lessen addictive impulses and facilitate recovery from overdose, systemic disruption of endogenous opioid receptor signalling through the use of these antagonistic drugs can have severe side effects. In the light of these challenges, current efforts have focused on identifying new therapeutic targets that selectively and specifically modulate opioid receptor signalling and function so as to achieve analgesia without the adverse effects associated with chronic opiate use. We have previously reported that opioid receptors interact with each other to form heteromeric complexes and that these interactions affect morphine signalling. Since chronic morphine administration leads to an enhanced level of these heteromers, these opioid receptor heteromeric complexes represent novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of pain and opiate addiction. In this review, we discuss the role of heteromeric opioid receptor complexes with a focus on mu opioid receptor (MOR) and delta opioid receptor (DOR) heteromers. We also highlight the evidence for altered pharmacological properties of opioid ligands and changes in ligand function resulting from the heteromer formation. PMID:22490239

  17. Hypothalamic κ-Opioid Receptor Modulates the Orexigenic Effect of Ghrelin

    PubMed Central

    Romero-Picó, Amparo; Vázquez, Maria J; González-Touceda, David; Folgueira, Cintia; Skibicka, Karolina P; Alvarez-Crespo, Mayte; Van Gestel, Margriet A; Velásquez, Douglas A; Schwarzer, Christoph; Herzog, Herbert; López, Miguel; Adan, Roger A; Dickson, Suzanne L; Diéguez, Carlos; Nogueiras, Rubén

    2013-01-01

    The opioid system is well recognized as an important regulator of appetite and energy balance. We now hypothesized that the hypothalamic opioid system might modulate the orexigenic effect of ghrelin. Using pharmacological and gene silencing approaches, we demonstrate that ghrelin utilizes a hypothalamic κ-opioid receptor (KOR) pathway to increase food intake in rats. Pharmacological blockade of KOR decreases the acute orexigenic effect of ghrelin. Inhibition of KOR expression in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus is sufficient to blunt ghrelin-induced food intake. By contrast, the specific inhibition of KOR expression in the ventral tegmental area does not affect central ghrelin-induced feeding. This new pathway is independent of ghrelin-induced AMP-activated protein kinase activation, but modulates the levels of the transcription factors and orexigenic neuropeptides triggered by ghrelin to finally stimulate feeding. Our novel data implicate hypothalamic KOR signaling in the orexigenic action of ghrelin. PMID:23348063

  18. Dopamine D1 receptor gene variation modulates opioid dependence risk by affecting transition to addiction.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Feng; Yan, Chun-xia; Wen, Yi-chong; Wang, Jiayin; Bi, Jinbo; Zhao, Ya-ling; Wei, Lai; Gao, Cheng-ge; Jia, Wei; Li, Sheng-bin

    2013-01-01

    Dopamine D1 receptor (DRD1) modulates opioid reinforcement, reward, and opioid-induced neuroadaptation. We propose that DRD1 polymorphism affects susceptibility to opioid dependence (OD), the efficiency of transition to OD, and opioid-induced pleasure response. We analyzed potential association between seven DRD1 polymorphisms with the following traits: duration of transition from the first use to dependence (DTFUD), subjective pleasure responses to opioid on first use and post-dependence use, and OD risk in 425 Chinese with OD and 514 healthy controls. DTFUD and level of pleasure responses were examined using a semi-structured interview. The DTFUD of opioid addicts ranged from 5 days to 11 years. Most addicts (64.0%) reported non-comfortable response upon first opioid use, while after dependence, most addicts (53.0%) felt strong opioid-induced pleasure. Survival analysis revealed a correlation of prolonged DTFUD with the minor allele-carrying genotypes of DRD1 rs4532 (hazard ratios (HR) = 0.694; p = 0.001) and rs686 (HR = 0.681, p = 0.0003). Binary logistic regression indicated that rs10063995 GT genotype (vs. GG+TT, OR = 0.261) could predict decreased pleasure response to first-time use and the minor alleles of rs686 (OR = 0.535) and rs4532 (OR = 0.537) could predict decreased post-dependence pleasure. Moreover, rs686 minor allele was associated with a decreased risk for rapid transition from initial use to dependence (DTFUD≤30 days; OR = 0.603) or post-dependence euphoria (OR = 0.603) relative to major allele. In conclusion, DRD1 rs686 minor allele decreases the OD risk by prolonging the transition to dependence and attenuating opioid-induced pleasure in Chinese.

  19. Cholinergic Modulation by Opioid Receptor Ligands: Potential Application to Alzheimer’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Motel, William C.; Coop, Andrew; Cunningham, Christopher W.

    2013-01-01

    Morphinans have a storied history in medicinal chemistry as pain management drugs but have received attention as modulators of cholinergic signaling for the treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). Galantamine is a reversible, competitive acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitor and allosteric potentiating ligand of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR-APL) that shares many common structural elements with morphinan-based opioids. The structurally diverse opioids codeine and eseroline, like galantamine, are also nAChR-APL that have greatly diminished affinity for AChE, representing potential lead compounds for selective nAChR-APL development. In accordance with the emerging repurposing trend of evaluating known compounds for novel pharmacological activity, ongoing research on augmentation of cholinergic signaling that has been aided by the use of opioids will be reviewed. PMID:22931533

  20. From mouse to man: the 5-HT3 receptor modulates physical dependence on opioid narcotics

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Larry F.; Liang, De-Yong; Li, Xiangqi; Sahbaie, Peyman; D'Arcy, Nicole; Liao, Guochun; Peltz, Gary; Clark, J. David

    2009-01-01

    Objectives Addiction to opioid narcotics represents a major public health challenge. Animal models of one component of addiction, physical dependence, show this trait to be highly heritable. The analysis of opioid dependence using contemporary in-silico techniques offers an approach to discover novel treatments for dependence and addiction. Methods In these experiments, opioid withdrawal behavior in 18 inbred strains of mice was assessed. Mice were treated for 4 days with escalating doses of morphine before the administration of naloxone allowing the quantification of opioid dependence. After haplotypic analysis, experiments were designed to evaluate the top gene candidate as a modulator of physical dependence. Behavioral studies as well as measurements of gene expression on the mRNA and protein levels were completed. Finally, a human model of opioid dependence was used to quantify the effects of the 5-HT3 antagonist ondansetron on signs and symptoms of withdrawal. Results The Htr3a gene corresponding to the 5-HT3 receptor emerged as the leading candidate. Pharmacological studies using the selective 5-HT3 antagonist ondansetron supported the link in mice. Morphine strongly regulated the expression of the Htr3a gene in various central nervous system regions including the amygdala, dorsal raphe, and periaqueductal gray nuclei, which have been linked to opioid dependence in previous studies. Using an acute morphine administration model, the role of 5-HT3 in controlling the objective signs of withdrawal in humans was confirmed. Conclusion These studies show the power of in-silico genetic mapping, and reveal a novel target for treating an important component of opioid addiction. PMID:19214139

  1. From mouse to man: the 5-HT3 receptor modulates physical dependence on opioid narcotics.

    PubMed

    Chu, Larry F; Liang, De-Yong; Li, Xiangqi; Sahbaie, Peyman; D'arcy, Nicole; Liao, Guochun; Peltz, Gary; David Clark, J

    2009-03-01

    Addiction to opioid narcotics represents a major public health challenge. Animal models of one component of addiction, physical dependence, show this trait to be highly heritable. The analysis of opioid dependence using contemporary in-silico techniques offers an approach to discover novel treatments for dependence and addiction. In these experiments, opioid withdrawal behavior in 18 inbred strains of mice was assessed. Mice were treated for 4 days with escalating doses of morphine before the administration of naloxone allowing the quantification of opioid dependence. After haplotypic analysis, experiments were designed to evaluate the top gene candidate as a modulator of physical dependence. Behavioral studies as well as measurements of gene expression on the mRNA and protein levels were completed. Finally, a human model of opioid dependence was used to quantify the effects of the 5-HT3 antagonist ondansetron on signs and symptoms of withdrawal. The Htr3a gene corresponding to the 5-HT3 receptor emerged as the leading candidate. Pharmacological studies using the selective 5-HT3 antagonist ondansetron supported the link in mice. Morphine strongly regulated the expression of the Htr3a gene in various central nervous system regions including the amygdala, dorsal raphe, and periaqueductal gray nuclei, which have been linked to opioid dependence in previous studies. Using an acute morphine administration model, the role of 5-HT3 in controlling the objective signs of withdrawal in humans was confirmed. These studies show the power of in-silico genetic mapping, and reveal a novel target for treating an important component of opioid addiction.

  2. Nanoconjugated NAP as a Potent and Periphery Selective Mu Opioid Receptor Modulator To Treat Opioid-Induced Constipation.

    PubMed

    Xu, Guoyan G; Zolotarskaya, Olga Yu; Williams, Dwight A; Yuan, Yunyun; Selley, Dana E; Dewey, William L; Akbarali, Hamid I; Yang, Hu; Zhang, Yan

    2017-01-12

    Opioids are the mainstay for cancer and noncancer pain management. However, their use is often associated with multiple adverse effects. Among them, the most common and persistent one is probably opioid-induced constipation (OIC). Periphery selective opioid antagonists may alleviate the symptoms of OIC without compromising the analgesic effects of opioids. Recently our laboratories have identified one novel lead compound, 17-cyclopropylmethyl-3,14β-dihydroxy-4,5α-epoxy-6β-[(4'-pyridyl)acetamido]morphinan (NAP), as a peripherally selective mu opioid receptor ligand carrying subnanomolar affinity to the mu opioid receptor and over 100-folds of selectivity over both the delta and kappa opioid receptors, with reasonable oral availability and half-life, and potential to treat OIC. Nanoparticle-based drug delivery systems are now widely considered due to their technological advantages such as good stability, high carrier capacity, low therapeutic side effects, etc. Herein we report nanoparticle supported NAP as a potential candidate for OIC treatment with improved peripheral selectivity over the original lead compound NAP.

  3. Modulation of peripheral μ-opioid analgesia by σ1 receptors.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Fernández, Cristina; Montilla-García, Ángeles; González-Cano, Rafael; Nieto, Francisco Rafael; Romero, Lucía; Artacho-Cordón, Antonia; Montes, Rosa; Fernández-Pastor, Begoña; Merlos, Manuel; Baeyens, José Manuel; Entrena, José Manuel; Cobos, Enrique José

    2014-01-01

    We evaluated the effects of σ1-receptor inhibition on μ-opioid-induced mechanical antinociception and constipation. σ1-Knockout mice exhibited marked mechanical antinociception in response to several μ-opioid analgesics (fentanyl, oxycodone, morphine, buprenorphine, and tramadol) at systemic (subcutaneous) doses that were inactive in wild-type mice and even unmasked the antinociceptive effects of the peripheral μ-opioid agonist loperamide. Likewise, systemic (subcutaneous) or local (intraplantar) treatment of wild-type mice with the selective σ1 antagonists BD-1063 [1-[2-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)ethyl]-4-methylpiperazine dihydrochloride] or S1RA [4-[2-[[5-methyl-1-(2-naphthalenyl)1H-pyrazol-3-yl]oxy]ethyl] morpholine hydrochloride] potentiated μ-opioid antinociception; these effects were fully reversed by the σ1 agonist PRE-084 [2-(4-morpholinethyl)1-phenylcyclohexanecarboxylate) hydrochloride], showing the selectivity of the pharmacological approach. The μ-opioid antinociception potentiated by σ1 inhibition (by σ1-receptor knockout or σ1-pharmacological antagonism) was more sensitive to the peripherally restricted opioid antagonist naloxone methiodide than opioid antinociception under normal conditions, indicating a key role for peripheral opioid receptors in the enhanced antinociception. Direct interaction between the opioid drugs and σ1 receptor cannot account for our results, since the former lacked affinity for σ1 receptors (labeled with [(3)H](+)-pentazocine). A peripheral role for σ1 receptors was also supported by their higher density (Western blot results) in peripheral nervous tissue (dorsal root ganglia) than in several central areas involved in opioid antinociception (dorsal spinal cord, basolateral amygdala, periaqueductal gray, and rostroventral medulla). In contrast to its effects on nociception, σ1-receptor inhibition did not alter fentanyl- or loperamide-induced constipation, a peripherally mediated nonanalgesic opioid effect. Therefore

  4. Structural and functional interactions between six-transmembrane μ-opioid receptors and β2-adrenoreceptors modulate opioid signaling

    PubMed Central

    Samoshkin, Alexander; Convertino, Marino; Viet, Chi T.; Wieskopf, Jeffrey S.; Kambur, Oleg; Marcovitz, Jaclyn; Patel, Pinkal; Stone, Laura S.; Kalso, Eija; Mogil, Jeffrey S.; Schmidt, Brian L.; Maixner, William; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.; Diatchenko, Luda

    2015-01-01

    The primary molecular target for clinically used opioids is the μ-opioid receptor (MOR). Besides the major seven-transmembrane (7TM) receptors, the MOR gene codes for alternatively spliced six-transmembrane (6TM) isoforms, the biological and clinical significance of which remains unclear. Here, we show that the otherwise exclusively intracellular localized 6TM-MOR translocates to the plasma membrane upon coexpression with β2-adrenergic receptors (β2-ARs) through an interaction with the fifth and sixth helices of β2-AR. Coexpression of the two receptors in BE(2)-C neuroblastoma cells potentiates calcium responses to a 6TM-MOR ligand, and this calcium response is completely blocked by a selective β2-antagonist in BE(2)-C cells, and in trigeminal and dorsal root ganglia. Co-administration of 6TM-MOR and β2-AR ligands leads to substantial analgesic synergy and completely reverses opioid-induced hyperalgesia in rodent behavioral models. Together, our results provide evidence that the heterodimerization of 6TM-MOR with β2-AR underlies a molecular mechanism for 6TM cellular signaling, presenting a unique functional responses to opioids. This signaling pathway may contribute to the hyperalgesic effects of opioids that can be efficiently blocked by β2-AR antagonists, providing a new avenue for opioid therapy. PMID:26657998

  5. Structural and functional interactions between six-transmembrane μ-opioid receptors and β2-adrenoreceptors modulate opioid signaling.

    PubMed

    Samoshkin, Alexander; Convertino, Marino; Viet, Chi T; Wieskopf, Jeffrey S; Kambur, Oleg; Marcovitz, Jaclyn; Patel, Pinkal; Stone, Laura S; Kalso, Eija; Mogil, Jeffrey S; Schmidt, Brian L; Maixner, William; Dokholyan, Nikolay V; Diatchenko, Luda

    2015-12-11

    The primary molecular target for clinically used opioids is the μ-opioid receptor (MOR). Besides the major seven-transmembrane (7TM) receptors, the MOR gene codes for alternatively spliced six-transmembrane (6TM) isoforms, the biological and clinical significance of which remains unclear. Here, we show that the otherwise exclusively intracellular localized 6TM-MOR translocates to the plasma membrane upon coexpression with β2-adrenergic receptors (β2-ARs) through an interaction with the fifth and sixth helices of β2-AR. Coexpression of the two receptors in BE(2)-C neuroblastoma cells potentiates calcium responses to a 6TM-MOR ligand, and this calcium response is completely blocked by a selective β2-antagonist in BE(2)-C cells, and in trigeminal and dorsal root ganglia. Co-administration of 6TM-MOR and β2-AR ligands leads to substantial analgesic synergy and completely reverses opioid-induced hyperalgesia in rodent behavioral models. Together, our results provide evidence that the heterodimerization of 6TM-MOR with β2-AR underlies a molecular mechanism for 6TM cellular signaling, presenting a unique functional responses to opioids. This signaling pathway may contribute to the hyperalgesic effects of opioids that can be efficiently blocked by β2-AR antagonists, providing a new avenue for opioid therapy.

  6. Discovery, synthesis, and molecular pharmacology of selective positive allosteric modulators of the δ-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Burford, Neil T; Livingston, Kathryn E; Canals, Meritxell; Ryan, Molly R; Budenholzer, Lauren M L; Han, Ying; Shang, Yi; Herbst, John J; O'Connell, Jonathan; Banks, Martyn; Zhang, Litao; Filizola, Marta; Bassoni, Daniel L; Wehrman, Tom S; Christopoulos, Arthur; Traynor, John R; Gerritz, Samuel W; Alt, Andrew

    2015-05-28

    Allosteric modulators of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) have a number of potential advantages compared to agonists or antagonists that bind to the orthosteric site of the receptor. These include the potential for receptor selectivity, maintenance of the temporal and spatial fidelity of signaling in vivo, the ceiling effect of the allosteric cooperativity which may prevent overdose issues, and engendering bias by differentially modulating distinct signaling pathways. Here we describe the discovery, synthesis, and molecular pharmacology of δ-opioid receptor-selective positive allosteric modulators (δ PAMs). These δ PAMs increase the affinity and/or efficacy of the orthosteric agonists leu-enkephalin, SNC80 and TAN67, as measured by receptor binding, G protein activation, β-arrestin recruitment, adenylyl cyclase inhibition, and extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) activation. As such, these compounds are useful pharmacological tools to probe the molecular pharmacology of the δ receptor and to explore the therapeutic potential of δ PAMs in diseases such as chronic pain and depression.

  7. Allosteric modulation model of the mu opioid receptor by herkinorin, a potent not alkaloidal agonist.

    PubMed

    Marmolejo-Valencia, A F; Martínez-Mayorga, K

    2017-05-01

    Modulation of opioid receptors is the primary choice for pain management and structural information studies have gained new horizons with the recently available X-ray crystal structures. Herkinorin is one of the most remarkable salvinorin A derivative with high affinity for the mu opioid receptor, moderate selectivity and lack of nitrogen atoms on its structure. Surprisingly, binding models for herkinorin are lacking. In this work, we explore binding models of herkinorin using automated docking, molecular dynamics simulations, free energy calculations and available experimental information. Our herkinorin D-ICM-1 binding model predicted a binding free energy of -11.52 ± 1.14 kcal mol(-1) by alchemical free energy estimations, which is close to the experimental values -10.91 ± 0.2 and -10.80 ± 0.05 kcal mol(-1) and is in agreement with experimental structural information. Specifically, D-ICM-1 molecular dynamics simulations showed a water-mediated interaction between D-ICM-1 and the amino acid H297(6.52), this interaction coincides with the co-crystallized ligands. Another relevant interaction, with N127(2.63), allowed to rationalize herkinorin's selectivity to mu over delta opioid receptors. Our suggested binding model for herkinorin is in agreement with this and additional experimental data. The most remarkable observation derived from our D-ICM-1 model is that herkinorin reaches an allosteric sodium ion binding site near N150(3.35). Key interactions in that region appear relevant for the lack of β-arrestin recruitment by herkinorin. This interaction is key for downstream signaling pathways involved in the development of side effects, such as tolerance. Future SAR studies and medicinal chemistry efforts will benefit from the structural information presented in this work.

  8. Allosteric modulation model of the mu opioid receptor by herkinorin, a potent not alkaloidal agonist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marmolejo-Valencia, A. F.; Martínez-Mayorga, K.

    2017-05-01

    Modulation of opioid receptors is the primary choice for pain management and structural information studies have gained new horizons with the recently available X-ray crystal structures. Herkinorin is one of the most remarkable salvinorin A derivative with high affinity for the mu opioid receptor, moderate selectivity and lack of nitrogen atoms on its structure. Surprisingly, binding models for herkinorin are lacking. In this work, we explore binding models of herkinorin using automated docking, molecular dynamics simulations, free energy calculations and available experimental information. Our herkinorin D-ICM-1 binding model predicted a binding free energy of -11.52 ± 1.14 kcal mol-1 by alchemical free energy estimations, which is close to the experimental values -10.91 ± 0.2 and -10.80 ± 0.05 kcal mol-1 and is in agreement with experimental structural information. Specifically, D-ICM-1 molecular dynamics simulations showed a water-mediated interaction between D-ICM-1 and the amino acid H2976.52, this interaction coincides with the co-crystallized ligands. Another relevant interaction, with N1272.63, allowed to rationalize herkinorin's selectivity to mu over delta opioid receptors. Our suggested binding model for herkinorin is in agreement with this and additional experimental data. The most remarkable observation derived from our D-ICM-1 model is that herkinorin reaches an allosteric sodium ion binding site near N1503.35. Key interactions in that region appear relevant for the lack of β-arrestin recruitment by herkinorin. This interaction is key for downstream signaling pathways involved in the development of side effects, such as tolerance. Future SAR studies and medicinal chemistry efforts will benefit from the structural information presented in this work.

  9. Ivy and neurogliaform interneurons are a major target of μ-opioid receptor modulation.

    PubMed

    Krook-Magnuson, Esther; Luu, Lillian; Lee, Sang-Hun; Varga, Csaba; Soltesz, Ivan

    2011-10-19

    μ-Opioid receptors (μORs) are selectively expressed on interneurons in area CA1 of the hippocampus. Fast-spiking, parvalbumin-expressing, basket cells express μORs, but circumstantial evidence suggests that another major, unidentified, GABAergic cell class must also be modulated by μORs. Here we report that the abundant, dendritically targeting, neurogliaform family of cells (Ivy and neurogliaform cells) is a previously unrecognized target of direct modulation by μORs. Ivy and neurogliaform cells are not only numerous but also have unique properties, including promiscuous gap junctions formed with various interneuronal subtypes, volume transmission, and the ability to produce a postsynaptic GABA(B) response after a single presynaptic spike. Using a mouse line expressing green fluorescent protein under the neuropeptide Y promoter, we find that, across all layers of CA1, activation of μORs hyperpolarizes Ivy and neurogliaform cells. Furthermore, paired recordings between synaptically coupled Ivy and pyramidal cells show that Ivy cell terminals are dramatically inhibited by μOR activation. Effects in Ivy and neurogliaform cells are seen at similar concentrations of agonist as those producing inhibition in fast-spiking parvalbumin basket cells. We also report that Ivy cells display the recently described phenomenon of persistent firing, a state of continued firing in the absence of continued input, and that induction of persistent firing is inhibited by μOR activation. Together, these findings identify a major, previously unrecognized, target of μOR modulation. Given the prominence of this cell type in and beyond CA1, as well as its unique role in microcircuitry, opioid modulation of neurogliaform cells has wide implications.

  10. Long-term plasticity of corticostriatal synapses is modulated by pathway-specific co-release of opioids through κ-opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Hawes, Sarah L; Salinas, Armando G; Lovinger, David M; Blackwell, Kim T

    2017-08-15

    Both endogenous opioids and opiate drugs of abuse modulate learning of habitual and goal-directed actions, and can also modify long-term plasticity of corticostriatal synapses. Striatal projection neurons of the direct pathway co-release the opioid neuropeptide dynorphin which can inhibit dopamine release via κ-opioid receptors. Theta-burst stimulation of corticostriatal fibres produces long-term potentiation (LTP) in striatal projection neurons when measured using whole-cell patch recording. Optogenetic activation of direct pathway striatal projection neurons inhibits LTP while reducing dopamine release. Because the endogenous release of opioids is activity dependent, this modulation of synaptic plasticity represents a negative feedback mechanism that may limit runaway enhancement of striatal neuron activity in response to drugs of abuse. Synaptic plasticity in the striatum adjusts behaviour adaptively during skill learning, or maladaptively in the case of addiction. Just as dopamine plays a critical role in synaptic plasticity underlying normal skill learning and addiction, endogenous and exogenous opiates also modulate learning and addiction-related striatal plasticity. Though the role of opioid receptors in long-term depression in striatum has been characterized, their effect on long-term potentiation (LTP) remains unknown. In particular, direct pathway (dopamine D1 receptor-containing; D1R-) spiny projection neurons (SPNs) co-release the opioid neuropeptide dynorphin, which acts at presynaptic κ-opioid receptors (KORs) on dopaminergic afferents and can negatively regulate dopamine release. Therefore, we evaluated the interaction of co-released dynorphin and KOR on striatal LTP. We optogenetically facilitate the release of endogenous dynorphin from D1R-SPNs in brain slice while using whole-cell patch recording to measure changes in the synaptic response of SPNs following theta-burst stimulation (TBS) of cortical afferents. Our results demonstrate that TBS

  11. Amylin Receptor Signaling in the Nucleus Accumbens Negatively Modulates μ-opioid-Driven Feeding

    PubMed Central

    Baisley, Sarah K; Baldo, Brian A

    2014-01-01

    Amylin is a peptide co-secreted with insulin that penetrates into the brain, and produces satiation-like effects via actions in the brainstem, hypothalamus, and mesencephalon. Little is known, however, about the effects of amylin in the nucleus accumbens shell (AcbSh), where a circumscribed zone of intense amylin receptor (AMY-R) binding overlaps reported mappings of a ‘hotspot' for μ-opioid receptor (μ-OR) amplification of food reward. Here, the ability of intra-AcbSh AMY-R signaling to modulate μ-OR-driven feeding was explored. Amylin (1–30 ng) was administered with the μ-OR agonist, D-Ala2, N-MePhe4, Gly-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO) (0.25 μg), directly into the AcbSh of ad libitum-maintained rats. Amylin dose-dependently reversed DAMGO-induced hyperphagia; 3 ng of amylin reduced DAMGO-mediated feeding by nearly 50%. This dose was, however, completely ineffective at altering DAMGO-induced feeding in the anterior dorsal striatum. Intra-AcbSh amylin alone (3–30 ng) modestly suppressed 10% sucrose intake in ad libitum-maintained rats, and chow in food-deprived rats, but only at the 30-ng dose. This result indicates that reversal of AcbSh DAMGO-induced feeding at a 10-fold lower dose was neither due to malaise nor motoric impairment. Finally, intra-AcbSh infusion of the AMY-R antagonist, AC187 (20 μg), significantly attenuated the ability of prefeeding to suppress DAMGO-induced food intake, with no effects in non-prefed rats. Hence, AMY-R signaling negatively modulates μ-OR-mediated appetitive responses at the level of the AcbSh. The results with AC187 indicate that endogenous AMY-R transmission in the AcbSh curtails opioid function in the postprandial period, suggesting a novel pathway for peripheral-central integration in the control of appetitive motivation and opioid reward. PMID:24957819

  12. Modulation of serotonin transporter function by kappa-opioid receptor ligands.

    PubMed

    Sundaramurthy, Santhanalakshmi; Annamalai, Balasubramaniam; Samuvel, Devadoss J; Shippenberg, Toni S; Jayanthi, Lankupalle D; Ramamoorthy, Sammanda

    2017-02-01

    Kappa opioid receptor (KOR) agonists produce dysphoria and psychotomimesis. While KOR agonists produce pro-depressant-like effects, KOR antagonists produce anti-depressant-like effects in rodent models. The cellular mechanisms and downstream effector(s) by which KOR ligands produce these effects are not clear. KOR agonists modulate serotonin (5-HT) transmission in the brain regions implicated in mood and motivation regulation. Presynaptic serotonin transporter (SERT) activity is critical in the modulation of synaptic 5-HT and, subsequently, in mood disorders. Detailing the molecular events of KOR-linked SERT regulation is important for examining the postulated role of this protein in mood disorders. In this study, we used heterologous expression systems and native tissue preparations to determine the cellular signaling cascades linked to KOR-mediated SERT regulation. KOR agonists U69,593 and U50,488 produced a time and concentration dependent KOR antagonist-reversible decrease in SERT function. KOR-mediated functional down-regulation of SERT is sensitive to CaMKII and Akt inhibition. The U69,593-evoked decrease in SERT activity is associated with a decreased transport Vmax, reduced SERT cell surface expression, and increased SERT phosphorylation. Furthermore, KOR activation enhanced SERT internalization and decreased SERT delivery to the membrane. These data demonstrate that KOR activation decreases 5-HT uptake by altering SERT trafficking mechanisms and phosphorylation status to reduce the functional availability of surface SERT.

  13. Modulation of sympathetic actions on the heart by opioid receptor stimulation.

    PubMed

    Wong, T M; Shan, J

    2001-01-01

    The sympathetic nervous system, the most important extrinsic regulatory mechanism of the heart, is inhibited postsynaptically and presynaptically by opioid peptides produced in the heart via their respective receptors. The cardiac actions of beta-adrenergic receptor (beta-AR) stimulation are attenuated by activation of the opioid receptor (OR) with OR agonist at ineffective concentrations, implying cross-talk between the OR and beta-AR. This cross-talk results from inhibition of the Gs protein and adenylyl cyclase of the beta-AR pathway by the pertussis toxin-sensitive G protein of the opioid pathway. Alterations in cross-talk between these two receptors occur in pathological situations to meet bodily needs. In myocardial ischemia, when the sympathetic activity is increased, the inhibition of beta-AR stimulation by kappa-opioid stimulation is also enhanced, thus reducing the workload, oxygen consumption and cardiac injury. Whereas cardiac responsiveness to sympathetic discharges is also reduced after chronic hypoxia, the cross-talk between kappa-OR and beta-AR is reduced to prevent undue suppression of the sympathetic influence on the heart. On the other hand, impairment of the cross-talk may result in abnormality. A lack or a significant reduction in the inhibition of beta-AR stimulation by kappa-OR stimulation may lead to an excessive increase in cardiac activities, which contribute to the maintenance of high arterial blood pressure in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Other than opioid peptides, female sex hormone and adenosine also inhibit the sympathetic actions on the heart. In addition, sympathetic action is also inhibited presynaptically by kappa-opioid peptides via their receptor. Copyright 2001 National Science Council, ROC and S. Karger AG, Basel

  14. Individual differences in orexin-I receptor modulation of motivation for the opioid remifentanil.

    PubMed

    Porter-Stransky, Kirsten A; Bentzley, Brandon S; Aston-Jones, Gary

    2017-03-01

    Orexin-1 receptors (Ox1Rs) have been implicated in the motivation for drugs of abuse. Here, we utilized a within-session behavioral-economics threshold procedure to screen for individual differences in economic demand for the ultra-short-acting opioid remifentanil and to test whether antagonism of Ox1Rs reduces remifentanil demand. The behavioral-economics procedure revealed robust individual differences in free consumption of remifentanil (Q0 parameter; hedonic set point). Rats with low baseline Q0 (low takers) displayed high demand elasticity (α parameter; reduced responding as drug price increased indicating low motivation for drug), whereas subjects with a higher Q0 (high takers) exhibit low demand elasticity (low α) by continuing to self-administer remifentanil despite increased cost (reflecting higher motivation for drug). In a punished responding paradigm utilizing footshock, subjects that were classified as high takers at baseline withstood twice as much shock as low takers to continue self-administering remifentanil. Interestingly, Ox1R antagonism with SB-334867 reduced Q0 and increased α in low takers but not in high takers. Similarly, the Ox1R antagonist attenuated cue-induced, but not drug-induced, reinstatement of remifentanil seeking in low takers but had no significant effect on reinstatement of drug seeking in high takers. Together, these data reveal a novel role of orexins in demand for remifentanil: Ox1Rs modulate demand in low takers but not in individuals that exhibit addictive-like behaviors (high takers). Finally, the behavioral assays in this study can serve as a novel laboratory model for studying individual differences in opioid use disorders.

  15. Ligand-Based Discovery of a New Scaffold for Allosteric Modulation of the μ-Opioid Receptor.

    PubMed

    Bisignano, Paola; Burford, Neil T; Shang, Yi; Marlow, Brennica; Livingston, Kathryn E; Fenton, Abigail M; Rockwell, Kristin; Budenholzer, Lauren; Traynor, John R; Gerritz, Samuel W; Alt, Andrew; Filizola, Marta

    2015-09-28

    With the hope of discovering effective analgesics with fewer side effects, attention has recently shifted to allosteric modulators of the opioid receptors. In the past two years, the first chemotypes of positive or silent allosteric modulators (PAMs or SAMs, respectively) of μ- and δ-opioid receptor types have been reported in the literature. During a structure-guided lead optimization campaign with μ-PAMs BMS-986121 and BMS-986122 as starting compounds, we discovered a new chemotype that was confirmed to display μ-PAM or μ-SAM activity depending on the specific substitutions as assessed by endomorphin-1-stimulated β-arrestin2 recruitment assays in Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO)-μ PathHunter cells. The most active μ-PAM of this series was analyzed further in competition binding and G-protein activation assays to understand its effects on ligand binding and to investigate the nature of its probe dependence.

  16. Regulator of G protein signaling proteins differentially modulate signaling of μ and δ opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Zhihua; Li, Zhisong; Guo, Lei; Ye, Caiying; Li, Juan; Yu, Xiaoli; Yang, Huifen; Wang, Yulin; Chen, Chongguang; Zhang, Dechang; Liu-Chen, Lee-Yuan

    2009-01-01

    Effects of regulator of G protein signaling (RGS) proteins on μ and δ opioid receptors were investigated in HEK293 cells. Co-expression of RGS1, RGS2, RGS4, RGS9, RGS10 or RGS19 (Gα-interacting protein (GAIP)) significantly reduced [Tyr-D-Ala-Gly-N-methyl-Phe-Gly-ol]-Enkephalin (DAMGO)-induced inhibition of adenylyl cyclase (AC) mediated by μ opioid receptor, but only RGS9 decreased the effects of [Tyr-D-Pen-Gly-p-Chloro-Phe-D-Pen]-Enkephalin (DPDPE) mediated by δ opioid receptor. When C-tails of the receptors were exchanged (μ/δC and δ/μC chimeras), RGS proteins decreased δ/μC-mediated AC inhibition, but none had significant effects on that via μ/δC receptor. Thus, the C-terminal domains of the receptors are critical for the differential effects of RGS proteins, which may be due to differences in receptor - G protein - RGS protein interactions in signaling complexes. PMID:17433292

  17. Chronic Kappa opioid receptor activation modulates NR2B: Implication in treatment resistant depression

    PubMed Central

    Dogra, Shalini; Kumar, Ajeet; Umrao, Deepmala; Sahasrabuddhe, Amogh A.; Yadav, Prem N.

    2016-01-01

    Psychotomimetic and prodepressive effect by kappa opioid receptor (KOR) activation in rodents and human is widely known. Significantly, recent clinical investigations demonstrated the salutary effects of KOR antagonists in patients with treatment resistant depression, indicating essential role of KOR signaling in refractory depression. This study was undertaken to reveal the molecular determinant of KOR mediated depression and antidepressant response of KOR antagonist. We observed that chronic KOR activation by U50488, a selective KOR agonist, significantly increased depression like symptoms (behavioral despair, anhedonia and sociability) in C57BL/6J mice, which were blocked by KOR antagonist norBNI and antidepressant imipramine, but not by fluoxetine or citalopram. Further, chronic KOR activation increased phosphorylation of NR2B subunit of NMDA at tyrosine 1472 (pNR2B NMDA) in the hippocampus, but not in the cortex. Similar to behavioral effects norBNI and imipramine, but not SSRIs, blocked NR2B phosphorylation. Moreover, KOR induced depression like behaviors were reversed by NR2B selective inhibitor Ro 25-6981. Mechanistic studies in primary cultured neurons and brain tissues using genetic and pharmacological approaches revealed that stimulation of KOR modulates several molecular correlates of depression. Thus, these findings elucidate molecular mechanism of KOR signaling in treatment resistant depression like behaviors in mice. PMID:27634008

  18. Influence of intramuscular heat stimulation on modulation of nociception: complex role of central opioid receptors in descending facilitation and inhibition.

    PubMed

    You, Hao-Jun; Lei, Jing; Ye, Gang; Fan, Xiao-Li; Li, Qiang

    2014-10-01

    It has been reported that the threshold to activate 'silent' or inactive descending facilitation of nociception is lower than that of descending inhibition. Thus, the development of pain therapy to effectively drive descending inhibition alone, without the confounding influences of facilitation is a challenge. To address this issue we investigated the effects of intramuscular stimulation with a heating-needle on spinal nociception, assessed by measuring nociceptive paw withdrawal reflex in rats. Additionally, involvement of the thalamic 'nociceptive discriminators' (thalamic mediodorsal (MD) and ventromedial (VM) nuclei), and opioid-mediated mechanisms were further explored. Descending facilitation and inhibition were elicited by 46°C noxious heating-needle stimulation, and were regulated by thalamic MD and VM nuclei, respectively. In contrast, innocuous heating-needle stimulation at a temperature of 43°C elicited descending inhibition modulated by the thalamic VM nucleus alone. Microinjection of μ/δ/κ-opioid receptor antagonists β-funaltrexamine hydrochloride/naltrindole/nor-binaltorphimine, into the VM nucleus attenuated the 46°C intramuscular heating-needle stimulation-evoked descending inhibition, whereas treatment of the MD nucleus with β-funaltrexamine hydrochloride significantly decreased the descending facilitation. By contrast, descending inhibition evoked by 43°C heating-needle stimulation was only depressed by naltrindole, as opposed to μ- and κ-opioid receptor antagonists, which failed to influence descending inhibition. The present study reveals distinct roles of μ-opioid receptors in the function of thalamic MD and VM nuclei,which exert facilitatory and inhibitory actions on nociception. Furthermore, innocuous, but not noxious, intramuscular heating-needle stimulation targeting δ-opioid receptors is suggested to be a promising avenue for the effective inhibition of pain.

  19. Mu opioid receptor modulation in the nucleus accumbens lowers voluntary wheel running in rats bred for high running motivation.

    PubMed

    Ruegsegger, Gregory N; Toedebusch, Ryan G; Will, Matthew J; Booth, Frank W

    2015-10-01

    The exact role of opioid receptor signaling in mediating voluntary wheel running is unclear. To provide additional understanding, female rats selectively bred for motivation of low (LVR) versus high voluntary running (HVR) behaviors were used. Aims of this study were 1) to identify intrinsic differences in nucleus accumbens (NAc) mRNA expression of opioid-related transcripts and 2) to determine if nightly wheel running is differently influenced by bilateral NAc injections of either the mu-opioid receptor agonist D-Ala2, NMe-Phe4, Glyo5-enkephalin (DAMGO) (0.25, 2.5 μg/side), or its antagonist, naltrexone (5, 10, 20 μg/side). In Experiment 1, intrinsic expression of Oprm1 and Pdyn mRNAs were higher in HVR compared to LVR. Thus, the data imply that line differences in opioidergic mRNA in the NAc could partially contribute to differences in wheel running behavior. In Experiment 2, a significant decrease in running distance was present in HVR rats treated with 2.5 μg DAMGO, or with 10 μg and 20 μg naltrexone between hours 0-1 of the dark cycle. Neither DAMGO nor naltrexone had a significant effect on running distance in LVR rats. Taken together, the data suggest that the high nightly voluntary running distance expressed by HVR rats is mediated by increased endogenous mu-opioid receptor signaling in the NAc, that is disturbed by either agonism or antagonism. In summary, our findings on NAc opioidergic mRNA expression and mu-opioid receptor modulations suggest HVR rats, compared to LVR rats, express higher running levels mediated by an increase in motivation driven, in part, by elevated NAc opioidergic signaling.

  20. Enkephalins modulate inhibitory neuromuscular transmission in circular muscle of human colon via delta-opioid receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Hoyle, C H; Kamm, M A; Burnstock, G; Lennard-Jones, J E

    1990-01-01

    1. A sucrose-gap technique was used to investigate the neuromodulatory actions of enkephalins on non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic inhibitory junction potentials (IJPs) in the circular muscle of the human large intestine. 2. The native enkephalins, [Leu5]enkephalin (LENK) and [Met5]enkephalin (MENK) caused a concentration-dependent reduction in amplitude of IJPs without a significant effect on the smooth muscle membrane. 3. The actions of LENK and MENK were mimicked by the delta-selective opioid receptor agonists [D-Pen2, D-Pen5]enkephalin (DPDPE) and [D-Ala2, D-Leu5]enkephalin (DADLE). 4. The actions of LENK, MENK and DPDPE were antagonized to similar extents by the delta-selective opioid receptor antagonist ICI 174,864. 5. The mu-selective opioid receptor agonist [D-Ala2, Me Phe, Gly-ol5]enkephalin was approximately 100-fold less potent than any of the native or synthetic enkephalins at reducing the amplitude of the IJP. Dynorphin A and beta-endorphin both had very weak activity. 6. Responses to all of the agonists were inhibited by naloxone. The degree of antagonism of DPDPE or DADLE by naloxone (1 microM) was the same as that of LENK or MENK. 7. Neither MENK nor LENK affected hyperpolarization of the smooth muscle membrane induced by ATP or 5-hydroxytryptamine. Vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (1 pM-1 microM) did not produce any observable responses and this lack of reactivity was not affected by the enkephalins. 8. It is concluded that in the circular muscle of the human colon, LENK and MENK can act on prejunctional delta-opioid receptors to produce inhibition of non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic inhibitory neuromuscular transmission. Possible physiological significance of this prejunctional receptor is discussed. PMID:1966052

  1. Current Research on Opioid Receptor Function

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Yuan; He, Xiaozhou; Yang, Yilin; Chao, Dongman; Lazarus, Lawrence H.; Xia, Ying

    2012-01-01

    The use of opioid analgesics has a long history in clinical settings, although the comprehensive action of opioid receptors is still less understood. Nonetheless, recent studies have generated fresh insights into opioid receptor-mediated functions and their underlying mechanisms. Three major opioid receptors (μ-opioid receptor, MOR; δ-opioid receptor, DOR; and κ-opioid receptor, KOR) have been cloned in many species. Each opioid receptor is functionally sub-classified into several pharmacological subtypes, although, specific gene corresponding each of these receptor subtypes is still unidentified as only a single gene has been isolated for each opioid receptor. In addition to pain modulation and addiction, opioid receptors are widely involved in various physiological and pathophysiological activities, including the regulation of membrane ionic homeostasis, cell proliferation, emotional response, epileptic seizures, immune function, feeding, obesity, respiratory and cardiovascular control as well as some neurodegenerative disorders. In some species, they play an essential role in hibernation. One of the most exciting findings of the past decade is the opioid-receptor, especially DOR, mediated neuroprotection and cardioprotection. The up-regulation of DOR expression and DOR activation increase the neuronal tolerance to hypoxic/ischemic stress. The DOR signal triggers (depending on stress duration and severity) different mechanisms at multiple levels to preserve neuronal survival, including the stabilization of homeostasis and increased pro-survival signaling (e.g., PKC-ERK-Bcl 2) and anti-oxidative capacity. In the heart, PKC and KATP channels are involved in the opioid receptor-mediated cardioprotection. The DOR-mediated neuroprotection and cardioprotection have the potential to significantly alter the clinical pharmacology in terms of prevention and treatment of life-threatening conditions like stroke and myocardial infarction. The main purpose of this article

  2. Molecular Mechanisms of Opioid Receptor-Dependent Signaling and Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Al-Hasani, Ream; Bruchas, Michael R.

    2013-01-01

    Opioid receptors have been targeted for the treatment of pain and related disorders for thousands of years, and remain the most widely used analgesics in the clinic. Mu (μ), kappa (κ), and delta (δ) opioid receptors represent the originally classified receptor subtypes, with opioid receptor like-1 (ORL1) being the least characterized. All four receptors are G-protein coupled, and activate inhibitory G-proteins. These receptors form homo- and hetereodimeric complexes, signal to kinase cascades, and scaffold a variety of proteins. In this review, we discuss classical mechanisms and developments in understanding opioid tolerance, opioid receptor signaling, and highlight advances in opioid molecular pharmacology, behavioral pharmacology, and human genetics. We put into context how opioid receptor signaling leads to the modulation of behavior with the potential for therapeutic intervention. Finally, we conclude that there is a continued need for more translational work on opioid receptors in vivo. PMID:22020140

  3. Modulation of the opioid growth factor ([Met(5)]-enkephalin)-opioid growth factor receptor axis: novel therapies for squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.

    PubMed

    McLaughlin, Patricia J; Stucki, Jaimon K; Zagon, Ian S

    2012-04-01

    The opioid growth factor (OGF)-OGF receptor (OGFr) axis is a constitutively expressed biologic pathway regulating cell proliferation of squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). This study investigated modulation of the OGF-OGFr system by (1) exogenous OGF, (2) upregulation of OGFr using imiquimod, or (3) intermittent opioid receptor blockade with a low dose of naltrexone on progression of established SCCHN. Nude mice with visible human SCCHN SCC-1 tumors received (1) OGF or low-dose naltrexone either 1, 3, or 7 times/week or (2) imiquimod 1 or 3 times/week. Tumor growth and DNA synthesis were monitored. OGF and low-dose naltrexone increased the latency from visible to measurable tumors up to 1.6-fold. OGF, low-dose naltrexone, and imiquimod treatment markedly reduced tumor volume and weight, and decreased DNA synthesis in tumors. Modulation of the native OGF-OGFr regulatory network in SCCHN represents a novel nontoxic and highly efficacious approach for treatment of SCCHN. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Locus Coeruleus Kappa-Opioid Receptors Modulate Reinstatement of Cocaine Place Preference Through a Noradrenergic Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Al-Hasani, Ream; McCall, Jordan G; Foshage, Audra M; Bruchas, Michael R

    2013-01-01

    Activation of kappa-opioid receptors (KORs) in monoamine circuits results in dysphoria-like behaviors and stress-induced reinstatement of drug seeking in both conditioned place preference (CPP) and self-administration models. Noradrenergic (NA) receptor systems have also been implicated in similar behaviors. Dynorphinergic projections terminate within the locus coeruleus (LC), a primary source of norepinephrine in the forebrain, suggesting a possible link between the NA and dynorphin/kappa opioid systems, yet the implications of these putative interactions have not been investigated. We isolated the necessity of KORs in the LC in kappa opioid agonist (U50,488)-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP by blocking KORs in the LC with NorBNI (KOR antagonist). KOR-induced reinstatement was significantly attenuated in mice injected with NorBNI in the LC. To determine the sufficiency of KORs in the LC on U50,488-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP, we virally re-expressed KORs in the LC of KOR knockout mice. We found that KORs expression in the LC alone was sufficient to partially rescue KOR-induced reinstatement. Next we assessed the role of NA signaling in KOR-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP in the presence and absence of a α2-agonist (clonidine), β-adrenergic receptor antagonist (propranolol), and β1- and β2-antagonist (betaxolol and ICI-118,551 HCl). Both the blockade of postsynaptic β1-adrenergic receptors and the activation of presynaptic inhibitory adrenergic autoreceptors selectively potentiated the magnitude of KOR-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP but not cocaine-primed CPP reinstatement. Finally, viral restoration of KORs in the LC together with β-adrenergic receptor blockade did not potentiate KOR-induced reinstatement to cocaine CPP, suggesting that adrenergic receptor interactions occur at KOR-expressing regions external to the LC. These results identify a previously unknown interaction between KORs and NA systems and suggest a NA regulation of

  5. Locus coeruleus kappa-opioid receptors modulate reinstatement of cocaine place preference through a noradrenergic mechanism.

    PubMed

    Al-Hasani, Ream; McCall, Jordan G; Foshage, Audra M; Bruchas, Michael R

    2013-11-01

    Activation of kappa-opioid receptors (KORs) in monoamine circuits results in dysphoria-like behaviors and stress-induced reinstatement of drug seeking in both conditioned place preference (CPP) and self-administration models. Noradrenergic (NA) receptor systems have also been implicated in similar behaviors. Dynorphinergic projections terminate within the locus coeruleus (LC), a primary source of norepinephrine in the forebrain, suggesting a possible link between the NA and dynorphin/kappa opioid systems, yet the implications of these putative interactions have not been investigated. We isolated the necessity of KORs in the LC in kappa opioid agonist (U50,488)-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP by blocking KORs in the LC with NorBNI (KOR antagonist). KOR-induced reinstatement was significantly attenuated in mice injected with NorBNI in the LC. To determine the sufficiency of KORs in the LC on U50,488-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP, we virally re-expressed KORs in the LC of KOR knockout mice. We found that KORs expression in the LC alone was sufficient to partially rescue KOR-induced reinstatement. Next we assessed the role of NA signaling in KOR-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP in the presence and absence of a α2-agonist (clonidine), β-adrenergic receptor antagonist (propranolol), and β(1)- and β(2)-antagonist (betaxolol and ICI-118,551 HCl). Both the blockade of postsynaptic β(1)-adrenergic receptors and the activation of presynaptic inhibitory adrenergic autoreceptors selectively potentiated the magnitude of KOR-induced reinstatement of cocaine CPP but not cocaine-primed CPP reinstatement. Finally, viral restoration of KORs in the LC together with β-adrenergic receptor blockade did not potentiate KOR-induced reinstatement to cocaine CPP, suggesting that adrenergic receptor interactions occur at KOR-expressing regions external to the LC. These results identify a previously unknown interaction between KORs and NA systems and suggest a NA

  6. The alpha9/alpha10-containing nicotinic ACh receptor is directly modulated by opioid peptides, endomorphin-1, and dynorphin B, proposed efferent cotransmitters in the inner ear.

    PubMed

    Lioudyno, M I; Verbitsky, M; Glowatzki, E; Holt, J C; Boulter, J; Zadina, J E; Elgoyhen, A B; Guth, P S

    2002-08-01

    Opioid peptides have been detected in the auditory and vestibular efferent neurons where they colocalize with the major neurotransmitter, acetylcholine. We investigated the function of opioids to modulate neurotransmission mediated by hair cell's alpha9/alpha10-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (alpha9/alpha10nAChRs). The endogenous opioid peptides, endomorphin-1 (mu agonist) and dynorphin B (kappa agonist), but not a delta agonist [D-Pen2,D-Pen-5]enkephalin, inhibited the acetylcholine-evoked currents in frog saccular hair cells and rat inner hair cells. This inhibition was noncompetitive, voltage-independent, and was accompanied by an acceleration of the rate of current decay. Selective mu- and kappa-opioid receptor antagonists did not block the inhibition, although partial reduction by naloxone was observed. All opioid antagonists tested also reduced the acetylcholine response. Endomorphin-1 and dynorphin B inhibited the acetylcholine-evoked currents in alpha9/alpha10-expressing Xenopus oocytes. Because oocytes lack opioid receptors, it provides strong evidence for the direct interaction of opioid peptides with alpha9/alpha10nAChR. alpha9/alpha10nAChR is a target for modulation by endomorphin-1 and dynorphin B, efferent cotransmitters in the inner ear.

  7. κ Opioid receptor activation in different brain regions differentially modulates anxiety-related behaviors in mice.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yu-Jun; Hang, Ai; Lu, Yu-Chen; Long, Yu; Zan, Gui-Ying; Li, Xue-Ping; Wang, Qian; Zhao, Zeng-Xiang; He, Ling; Chi, Zhi-Qiang; Liu, Jing-Gen

    2016-11-01

    κ Opioid receptor system is widely implicated in the regulation of emotion. However, the findings about the role on anxiety in rodents are highly controversial, since both anxiogenic- and anxiolytic-like effects have been reported with κ opioid receptor activation. The mechanism and the underlying neuroanatomical substrates are unexplored. In the present study, we first investigated the effects of κ agonist U50,488H on anxiety-related behaviors over a wide range of doses, and we found that U50,488H produced dual effects in anxiety, with low dose being anxiogenic and high dose being anxiolytic. To assess the potential neuroanatomical substrates, we used phosphorylation of extracellular signal-related kinase1/2 (pERK1/2) to map the underlying neural circuits. We found that the anxiogenic effect of U50,488H was paralleled by an increase of pERK1/2 in the nucleus accumbens, whereas the anxiolytic effect was paralleled by an increase of pERK1/2 in the lateral septal nucleus. We then examined the behavioral consequences with locally microinjection of U50,488H, and we found that microinjection of U50,488H into the nucleus accumbens exerted anxiogenic-like effects, whereas microinjection of U50,488H into the lateral septal nucleus. Both effects can be abolished by κ antagonist nor-BNI pretreatment. To the best of our knowledge, the present work firstly provides the neuroanatomical sites that mediating the dual anxiogenic- and anxiolytic-like effects of U50,488H in mice. This study may help to explain current controversial role of κ receptor activation in anxiety-related behaviors in rodents, and may open new perspectives in the areas of anxiety disorders and κ receptor function. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Role of the thalamic submedius nucleus histamine H1 and H 2 and opioid receptors in modulation of formalin-induced orofacial pain in rats.

    PubMed

    Erfanparast, Amir; Tamaddonfard, Esmaeal; Taati, Mina; Dabaghi, Milad

    2015-10-01

    Histamine and opioid systems are involved in supraspinal modulation of pain. In this study, we investigated the effects of separate and combined microinjections of agonists and antagonists of histamine H1 and H2 and opioid receptors into the thalamic submedius (Sm) nucleus on the formalin-induced orofacial pain. Two guide cannulas were implanted into the right and left sides of the Sm in ketamine- and xylazine-anesthetized rats. Orofacial formalin pain was induced by subcutaneous injection of a diluted formalin solution (50 μl, 1.5%) into the vibrissa pad. Face rubbing durations were recorded at 3-min blocks for 45 min. Formalin produced a biphasic pain response (first phase: 0-3 min and second phase: 15-33 min). Separate and combined microinjections of histamine H1 and H2 receptor agonists, 2-pyridylethylamine (2-PEA) and dimaprit, respectively, and opioid receptor agonist, morphine, attenuated the second phase of pain. The analgesic effects induced by 2-PEA, dimaprit, and morphine were blocked by prior microinjections of fexofenadine (a histamine H1 receptor antagonist), famotidine (a histamine H2 receptor antagonist), and naloxone (an opioid receptor antagonist), respectively. Naloxone also prevented 2-PEA- and dimaprit-induced antinociception, and the analgesic effect induced by morphine was inhibited by fexofenadine and famotidine. These results showed the involvement of histamine H1 and H2 and opioid receptors in the Sm modulation of orofacial pain. Opioid receptor might be involved in analgesia induced by activation of histamine H1 and H2 receptors and vice versa.

  9. Pharmacological characterization of an opioid receptor in the ciliate Tetrahymena.

    PubMed

    Chiesa, R; Silva, W I; Renaud, F L

    1993-01-01

    A pharmacological characterization has been performed of the opioid receptor involved in modulation of phagocytosis in the protozoan ciliate Tetrahymena. Studies on inhibition of phagocytosis by mammalian prototypic opioid agonists revealed that morphine and beta-endorphin have the highest intrinsic activity, whereas all the other opioids tested can only be considered partial agonists. However, morphine (a mu-receptor agonist) is twice as potent as beta-endorphin (a delta-receptor agonist). Furthermore, the sensitivity for the opioid antagonist naloxone, determined in the presence of morphine and beta-endorphin, is very similar to the sensitivity exhibited by mammalian tissues rich in mu-opioid receptors. We suggest that the opioid receptor coupled to phagocytosis in Tetrahymena is mu-like in some of its pharmacological characteristics and may serve as a model system for studies on opioid receptor function and evolution.

  10. Opioid System Modulates the Immune Function: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Xuan; Liu, Renyu; Chen, Chunhua; Ji, Fang; Li, Tianzuo

    2016-01-01

    Opioid receptors and their ligands produce powerful analgesia that is effective in perioperative period and chronic pain managements accompanied with various side effects including respiratory depression, constipation and addiction etc. Opioids can also interfere with the immune system, not only participating in the function of the immune cells, but also modulating innate and acquired immune responses. The traditional notion of opioids is immunosuppressive. Recent studies indicate that the role of opioid receptors on immune function is complicated, working through various different mechanisms. Different opioids or opioids administrations show various effects on the immune system: immunosuppressive, immunostimulatory, or dual effect. It is important to elucidate the relationship between opioids and immune function, since immune system plays critical role in various physiological and pathophysiological processes, including the inflammation, tumor growth and metastasis, drug abuse, and so on. This review article tends to have an overview of the recent work and perspectives on opioids and the immune function. PMID:26985446

  11. Opioid System Modulates the Immune Function: A Review.

    PubMed

    Liang, Xuan; Liu, Renyu; Chen, Chunhua; Ji, Fang; Li, Tianzuo

    Opioid receptors and their ligands produce powerful analgesia that is effective in perioperative period and chronic pain managements accompanied with various side effects including respiratory depression, constipation and addiction etc. Opioids can also interfere with the immune system, not only participating in the function of the immune cells, but also modulating innate and acquired immune responses. The traditional notion of opioids is immunosuppressive. Recent studies indicate that the role of opioid receptors on immune function is complicated, working through various different mechanisms. Different opioids or opioids administrations show various effects on the immune system: immunosuppressive, immunostimulatory, or dual effect. It is important to elucidate the relationship between opioids and immune function, since immune system plays critical role in various physiological and pathophysiological processes, including the inflammation, tumor growth and metastasis, drug abuse, and so on. This review article tends to have an overview of the recent work and perspectives on opioids and the immune function.

  12. Immunomodulatory effects of endogenous and synthetic peptides activating opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Pomorska, Dorota K; Gach, Katarzyna; Janecka, Anna

    2014-01-01

    The main role of endogenous opioid peptides is the modulation of pain. Opioid peptides exert their analgesic activity by binding to the opioid receptors distributed widely in the central nervous system (CNS). However, opioid receptors are also found on tissues and organs outside the CNS, including the cells of the immune system, indicating that opioids are capable of exerting additional effects in periphery. Morphine, which is a gold standard in the treatment of chronic pain, is well-known for its immunosuppressive effects. Much less is known about the immunomodulatory effects exerted by endogenous (enkephalins, endorphins, dynorphins and endomorphins) and synthetic peptides activating opioid receptors. In this review we tried to summarize opioid peptide-mediated modulation of immune cell functions which can be stimulatory as well as inhibitory.

  13. Regional differences in mu-opioid receptor-dependent modulation of basal dopamine transmission in rat striatum.

    PubMed

    Campos-Jurado, Y; Martí-Prats, L; Zornoza, T; Polache, A; Granero, L; Cano-Cebrián, M J

    2017-01-18

    The nigrostriatal dopamine system is implicated in the regulation of reward and motor activity. Dopamine (DA) release in dorsal striatum (DS) is controlled by the firing rate of DA neurons in substantia nigra pars compacta. However, influences at terminal level, such as those involving activation of mu opioid receptors (MORs), can play a key role in determining DA levels in striatum. Nonetheless, published data also suggest that the effect of opioid drugs on DA levels may differ depending on the DS subregion analyzed. In this study, in vivo microdialysis in rats was used to explore this regional dependence. Changes in basal DA levels induced by local retrodialysis application of DAMGO (selective MORs agonist) in three different subregions of DS along the rostro-caudal axis were studied. Our results indicate that whereas administration of 10μM DAMGO into the rostral and caudal DS significantly reduced DA levels, in medial DS an increase in DA levels was observed. These data reveal a regional-dependent MOR modulation of DA release in DS, similar to that described in the ventral striatum. Our findings may lead to a better understanding of the nigrostriatal DA system regulation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Effects of μ-opioid receptor modulation on the hippocampal network activity of sharp wave and ripples

    PubMed Central

    Giannopoulos, Panagiotis; Papatheodoropoulos, Costas

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose Hippocampus-dependent memory involves the activity of sharp wave ripples (SWRs), which are thought to participate in the process of memory consolidation. The hippocampus contains high levels of endogenous opioids and of μ-opioid receptors (MORs). Here, we have assessed the role of MOR agonists in the modulation of SWRs. Experimental Approach Using recordings of extracellular potentials from the CA1 field of rat hippocampal slices, we examined the pharmacological actions of morphine, DAMGO and fentanyl on SWRs and on network excitability and paired-pulse inhibition. Key Results All three MOR agonists (1 nM–10 μM) significantly increased the amplitude of sharp waves and the occurrence of SWR sequences, but reduced the initiation of episodes of SWRs. Fentanyl was most potent in producing these effects and morphine the least. Interestingly, although SWRs were reduced by relatively high concentrations (≥100 nM) of all agonists, they were significantly enhanced by very low concentrations of morphine (5–10 nM). Morphine and DAMGO at moderate-to-high concentrations increased network excitability and reduced inhibition. Furthermore, DAMGO suppressed inhibition more readily than it increased excitation, whereas morphine suppressed inhibition only at high concentrations. These drug effects were reversed by the MOR antagonists naloxone and CTOP. Conclusions and Implications We found that the SWRs were significantly modulated by three MOR agonists and that the SWRs were very sensitive to subtle changes in the excitation/inhibition balance induced by MOR agonists. Such modulation might underlie the effects of these agonists on hippocampus-dependent memory. PMID:23043226

  15. Immunocytochemical characterization of Delta-opioid and Mu-opioid receptor protein in the bovine pineal gland.

    PubMed

    Phansuwan-Pujito, Pansiri; Ebadi, Manuchair; Govitrapong, Piyarat

    2006-01-01

    Opioidergic innervation has been identified in the mammalian pineal gland. Recently, opioid receptors in bovine pineal glands have been characterized; the activation of these receptors leads to the stimulation of melatonin synthesis. In this study, the precise localization of opioid receptors in bovine pineal glands was determined by an immunohistochemical technique using antibodies raised against delta-opioid and mu-opioid receptors. Immunoreactivity of these two receptors was present at a moderate level in pinealocytes. A double-labeling study has shown that delta-opioid receptors are localized predominantly with mu-opioid receptors in the same pinealocytes. These immunopositive pinealocytes are often located in a group; however, some of them are dispersed individually. In addition, both types of receptors were found in glial cells and processes. A small number of delta-receptor-immunoreactive nerve fibers were observed in the perivascular space and intraparenchyma of the pineal gland. Mu-opioid receptor immunoreactivity was found in a number of nerve fibers throughout the gland, and in terminal-like dots on pinealocytes. There was immunocolocalization between delta-opioid receptors or mu-opioid receptors and leu-enkephalin in some nerve fibers. The results of this study indicate that the modulatory effect of the opioid system on melatonin secretion in pineal glands might act via opioid receptors on pinealocytes, whereas receptors located on nerve fibers might modulate the release of opioid peptides.

  16. Molecular characterization of opioid receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Howard, A.D.

    1986-01-01

    The aim of this research was to purify and characterize active opioid receptors and elucidate molecular aspects of opioid receptor heterogeneity. Purification to apparent homogeneity of an opioid binding protein from bovine caudate was achieved by solubilization in the non-ionic detergent, digitonin, followed by sequential chromatography on the opiate affinity matrix, ..beta..-naltrexylethylenediamine-CH-Sepharose 4B, and on the lectine affinity matrix, wheat germ agglutinin-agarose. Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS-PAGE) followed by autoradiography revealed that radioiodinated purified receptor gave a single band. Purified receptor preparations showed a specific activity of 12,000-15,000 fmol of opiate bound per mg of protein. Radioiodinated human beta-endorphin (/sup 125/I-beta-end/sub H/) was used as a probe to investigate the ligand binding subunits of mu and delta opioid receptors. /sup 125/I-beta-end/sub H/ was shown to bind to a variety of opioid receptor-containing tissues with high affinity and specificity with preference for mu and delta sites, and with little, if any, binding to kappa sites. Affinity crosslinking techniques were employed to covalently link /sup 125/I-beta-end/sub H/ to opioid receptors, utilizing derivatives of bis-succinimidyl esters that are bifunctional crosslinkers with specificities for amino and sulfhydryl groups. This, and competition experiments with high type-selective ligands, permitted the assignment of two labeled peptides to their receptor types, namely a peptide of M/sub r/ = 65,000 for mu receptors and one of M/sub r/ = 53,000 for delta receptors.

  17. Investigation of the role of βarrestin2 in kappa opioid receptor modulation in a mouse model of pruritus

    PubMed Central

    Morgenweck, Jenny; Frankowski, Kevin J.; Prisinzano, Thomas E.; Aubé, Jeffrey; Bohn, Laura M.

    2015-01-01

    The kappa opioid receptor (KOR) is involved in mediating pruritus; agonists targeting this receptor have been used to treat chronic intractable itch. Conversely, antagonists induce an inch response at the site of injection. As a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), the KOR has potential for signaling via G proteins and βarrestins, however, it is not clear which of these pathways are involved in the KOR modulation of itch. In this study asked whether the actions of KOR in pruritus involve βarrestins by using βarrestin2 knockout (βarr2-KO) mice as well as a recently described biased KOR agonist that biases receptor signaling toward G protein pathways over βarrestin2 recruitment. We find that the KOR antagonists nor-binaltorphimine (NorBNI) and 5′-guanidinonaltrindole (5′GNTI) induce acute pruritus in C57BL/6J mice, with reduced effects in KOR-KO mice. βarr2-KO mice display less of a response to KOR antagonist-induced itch compared to wild types, however no genotype differences are observed from chloroquine phosphate (CP)-induced itch, suggesting that the antagonists may utilize a KOR-βarrestin2 dependent mechanism. The KOR agonist U50,488H was equally effective in both WT and βarr2-KO mice in suppressing CP-induced itch. Furthermore, the G protein biased agonist, Isoquinolinone 2.1 was as effective as U50,488H in suppressing the itch response induced by KOR antagonist NorBNI or CP in C57BL/6J mice. Together these data suggest that the antipruritic effects of KOR agonists may not require βarrestins. PMID:26318102

  18. Investigation of the role of βarrestin2 in kappa opioid receptor modulation in a mouse model of pruritus.

    PubMed

    Morgenweck, Jenny; Frankowski, Kevin J; Prisinzano, Thomas E; Aubé, Jeffrey; Bohn, Laura M

    2015-12-01

    The kappa opioid receptor (KOR) is involved in mediating pruritus; agonists targeting this receptor have been used to treat chronic intractable itch. Conversely, antagonists induce an itch response at the site of injection. As a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), the KOR has potential for signaling via G proteins and βarrestins, however, it is not clear which of these pathways are involved in the KOR modulation of itch. In this study asked whether the actions of KOR in pruritus involve βarrestins by using βarrestin2 knockout (βarr2-KO) mice as well as a recently described biased KOR agonist that biases receptor signaling toward G protein pathways over βarrestin2 recruitment. We find that the KOR antagonists nor-binaltorphimine (NorBNI) and 5'-guanidinonaltrindole (5'GNTI) induce acute pruritus in C57BL/6J mice, with reduced effects in KOR-KO mice. βArr2-KO mice display less of a response to KOR antagonist-induced itch compared to wild types, however no genotype differences are observed from chloroquine phosphate (CP)-induced itch, suggesting that the antagonists may utilize a KOR-βarrestin2 dependent mechanism. The KOR agonist U50,488H was equally effective in both WT and βarr2-KO mice in suppressing CP-induced itch. Furthermore, the G protein biased agonist, Isoquinolinone 2.1 was as effective as U50,488H in suppressing the itch response induced by KOR antagonist NorBNI or CP in C57BL/6J mice. Together these data suggest that the antipruritic effects of KOR agonists may not require βarrestins.

  19. Sodium modulates opioid receptors through a membrane component different from G-proteins. Demonstration by target size analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ott, S.; Costa, T.; Herz, A.

    1988-07-25

    The target size for opioid receptor binding was studied after manipulations known to affect the interactions between receptor and GTP-binding regulatory proteins (G-proteins). Addition of GTP or its analogs to the binding reaction, exposure of intact cells to pertussis toxin prior to irradiation, or treatment of irradiated membranes with N-ethylmaleimide did not change the target size (approximately equal to 100 kDa) for opioid receptors in NG 108-15 cells and rat brain. These data suggest that the 100-kDa species does not include an active subunit of a G-protein or alternatively that GTP does not promote the dissociation of the receptor-G-protein complex. The presence of Na+ (100 mM) in the radioligand binding assay induced a biphasic decay curve for agonist binding and a flattening of the monoexponential decay curve for a partial agonist. In both cases the effect was explained by an irradiation-induced loss of the low affinity state of the opioid receptor produced by the addition of Na+. This suggests that an allosteric inhibitor that mediates the effect of sodium on the receptor is destroyed at low doses of irradiation, leaving receptors which are no longer regulated by sodium. The effect of Na+ on target size was slightly increased by the simultaneous addition of GTP but was not altered by pertussis toxin treatment. Thus, the sodium unit is distinct from G-proteins and may represent a new component of the opioid receptor complex. Assuming a simple bimolecular model of one Na+ unit/receptor, the size of this inhibitor can be measured as 168 kDa.

  20. Chemical neuroanatomical and psychopharmacological evidence that κ receptor-mediated endogenous opioid peptide neurotransmission in the dorsal and ventral mesencephalon modulates panic-like behaviour.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Juliana Almeida; de Freitas, Renato Leonardo; Eichenberger, Gustavo Cavalcanti Dutra; Padovan, Cláudia Maria; Coimbra, Norberto Cysne

    2013-01-05

    The chemical neuroanatomy and the effects of central administration of opioid antagonists on the innate fear-induced responses elicited by electrical (at escape behaviour threshold) stimulation of the midbrain tectum were determined. The aim of the present work was to investigate the interaction between the tecto-nigral endogenous opioid peptide-mediated disinhibitory pathways and nigro-tectal inhibitory links in the control of panic-like behaviour and their organisation in the continuum comprised by the deep layers of the superior colliculus (dlSC) and the dorsolateral columns of the periaqueductal grey matter (dlPAG). Beta-endorphin-labelled neurons and fibres were found in the dorsal midbrain and also in the substantia nigra. Opioid varicose fibres and terminal buttons were widely distributed in PAG columns and in all substantia nigra subdivisions. Microinjections of naltrexone (a non-selective opioid receptor antagonist; 5.0 μg/0.2 μl) or nor-binaltorphimine (a selective κ-opioid receptor antagonist; 5.0 μg/0.2 μl) in the dlSC/dlPAG continuum, in independent groups of animals, induced significant increases in the escape thresholds for midbrain tectum electrical stimulation. The microinjection of naltrexone or nor-binaltorphimine into the SNpr also increased the escape behaviour threshold for electrical stimulation of dlSC/dlPAG. These morphological and neuropharmacological findings support previous evidence from our team for the role played by the interaction between opioidergic and GABAergic mechanisms in the modulation of innate fear-induced responses. The present data offer a neuroanatomical basis for both intratectal axo-axonic/pre-synaptic and tecto-nigral axo-somatic opioid inhibition of GABAergic nigro-tectal neurons that modulate the dorsal midbrain neurons related to the organisation of fear-related emotional responses.

  1. In vivo opioid receptor heteromerization: where do we stand?

    PubMed Central

    Massotte, D

    2015-01-01

    Opioid receptors are highly homologous GPCRs that modulate brain function at all levels of neural integration, including autonomous, sensory, emotional and cognitive processing. Opioid receptors functionally interact in vivo, but the underlying mechanisms involving direct receptor–receptor interactions, affecting signalling pathways or engaging different neuronal circuits, remain unsolved. Heteromer formation through direct physical interaction between two opioid receptors or between an opioid receptor and a non-opioid one has been postulated and can be characterized by specific ligand binding, receptor signalling and trafficking properties. However, despite numerous studies in heterologous systems, evidence for physical proximity in vivo is only available for a limited number of opioid heteromers, and their physiopathological implication remains largely unknown mostly due to the lack of appropriate tools. Nonetheless, data collected so far using endogenous receptors point to a crucial role for opioid heteromers as a molecular entity that could underlie human pathologies such as alcoholism, acute or chronic pain as well as psychiatric disorders. Opioid heteromers therefore stand as new therapeutic targets for the drug discovery field. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24666391

  2. Kappa-opioid-receptor agonists modulate the renal excretion of water and electrolytes in anaesthetized rats.

    PubMed Central

    Ashton, N.; Balment, R. J.; Blackburn, T. P.

    1990-01-01

    1. Subcutaneous injection of the kappa-opioid agonists U50,488 (10 mg kg-1) and tifluadom (3.5 mg kg-1) into Inactin-anaesthetized, saline-infused rats was associated with a diuresis, antinatriuresis and antikaliuresis which lasted for up to 2 h. A high (5 mg kg-1), but not low (0.1 mg kg-1), dose of naloxone blocked the renal effects of U50,488. 2. U50,488 administration in anaesthetized, vasopressin-deficient Brattleboro DI rats was associated with an attenuated diuresis, though the antinatriuretic response remained intact. 3. The diuretic action of U50,488 was associated with an increase in glomerular filtration rate while fractional fluid reabsorption remained steady. In contrast, fractional sodium and potassium reabsorption were increased. 4. These data suggest that kappa-opioid agonists alter renal handling of both water and electrolytes. This appears to be mediated by two separate mechanisms: increased fluid loss largely reflects altered glomerular events while the fall in electrolyte excretion results from altered tubular handling. PMID:2158834

  3. The evolution of vertebrate opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Craig W.

    2011-01-01

    The proteins that mediate the analgesic and other effects of opioid drugs and endogenous opioid peptides are known as opioid receptors. Opioid receptors consist of a family of four closely-related proteins belonging to the large superfamily of G-protein coupled receptors. The three types of opioid receptors shown unequivocally to mediate analgesia in animal models are the mu (MOR), delta (DOR), and kappa (KOR) opioid receptor proteins. The role of the fourth member of the opioid receptor family, the nociceptin or orphanin FQ receptor (ORL), is not as clear as hyperalgesia, analgesia, and no effect was reported after administration of ORL agonists. There are now cDNA sequences for all four types of opioid receptors that are expressed in the brain of six species from three different classes of vertebrates. This review presents a comparative analysis of vertebrate opioid receptors using bioinformatics and data from recent human genome studies. Results indicate that opioid receptors arose by gene duplication, that there is a vector of opioid receptor divergence, and that MOR shows evidence of rapid evolution. PMID:19273128

  4. Using opioid receptors to expand the chemogenetic and optogenetic toolbox.

    PubMed

    Damez-Werno, Diane M; Kenny, Paul J

    2015-05-20

    In this issue of Neuron, innovative new modifications to opioid receptors are used to expand the tools available to modulate neuronal activity. Vardy et al. (2015) describe a new "DREADD" chemogenetic tool based on the inhibitory κ opioid receptor (KORD) that can be used in conjunction with already-available DREADDs. Siuda et al. (2015) report the development of "opto-MOR," a light-activatable μ opioid receptor (MOR) chimera that can be used to better understand the complexities of MOR signaling.

  5. Development of Kappa Opioid Receptor Antagonists

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, F. Ivy; Carlezon, William A.

    2013-01-01

    Kappa opioid receptors (KORs) belong to the G-protein coupled class of receptors (GPCRs). They are activated by the endogenous opioid peptide dynorphin (DYN) and expressed at particularly high levels within brain areas implicated in modulation of motivation, emotion, and cognitive function. Chronic activation of KORs in animal models has maladaptive effects including increases in behaviors that reflect depression, the propensity to engage in drug-seeking behavior, and drug craving. The fact that KOR activation has such a profound influence on behaviors often triggered by stress has led to interest in selective KOR antagonists as potential therapeutic agents. This perspective provides a description of preclinical research conducted in the development of several different classes of selective KOR antagonists, a summary of the clinical studies conducted thus far, and recommendations for the type of work needed in the future to determine if these agents would be useful as pharmacotherapies for neuropsychiatric illness. PMID:23360448

  6. Endothelin-converting enzyme 2 differentially regulates opioid receptor activity

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, A; Fujita, W; Gomes, I; Bobeck, E; Devi, L A

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Opioid receptor function is modulated by post-activation events such as receptor endocytosis, recycling and/or degradation. While it is generally understood that the peptide ligand gets co-endocytosed with the receptor, relatively few studies have investigated the role of the endocytosed peptide and peptide processing enzymes in regulating receptor function. In this study, we focused on endothelin-converting enzyme 2 (ECE2), a member of the neprilysin family of metallopeptidases that exhibits an acidic pH optimum, localizes to an intracellular compartment and selectively processes neuropeptides including opioid peptides in vitro, and examined its role in modulating μ receptor recycling and resensitization. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH The effect of ECE2 inhibition on hydrolysis of the endocytosed peptide was examined using thin-layer chromatography and on μ opioid receptor trafficking using either elisa or microscopy. The effect of ECE2 inhibition on receptor signalling was measured using a cAMP assay and, in vivo, on antinociception induced by intrathecally administered opioids by the tail-flick assay. KEY RESULTS The highly selective ECE2 inhibitor, S136492, significantly impaired μ receptor recycling and signalling by only those ligands that are ECE2 substrates and this was seen both in heterologous cells and in cells endogenously co-expressing μ receptors with ECE2. We also found that ECE2 inhibition attenuated antinociception mediated only by opioid peptides that are ECE2 substrates. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS These results suggest that ECE2, by selectively processing endogenous opioid peptides in the endocytic compartment, plays a role in modulating opioid receptor activity. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24990314

  7. New technologies for elucidating opioid receptor function

    PubMed Central

    Bruchas, Michael R.; Roth, Bryan L.

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in technology, including high resolution crystal structures of opioid receptors, novel chemical tools, and new genetic approaches have provided an unparalleled pallette of tools for deconstructing opioid receptor actions in vitro and in vivo. Here we provide a brief description of our understanding of opioid receptor function from both molecular and atomic perspectives, as well as their role in neural circuits in vivo. We then show how insights into the molecular details of opioid actions can facilitate the creation of functionally-selective (biased) and photoswitchable opioid ligands. Finally, we describe how newly engineered opioid receptor-based chemo- and optogenetic tools, and new mouse lines are expanding and transforming our understanding of opioid function and, perhaps, paving the way for new therapeutics. PMID:26833118

  8. Identification of selective agonists and positive allosteric modulators for µ- and δ-opioid receptors from a single high-throughput screen.

    PubMed

    Burford, Neil T; Wehrman, Tom; Bassoni, Daniel; O'Connell, Jonathan; Banks, Martyn; Zhang, Litao; Alt, Andrew

    2014-10-01

    Hetero-oligomeric complexes of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) may represent novel therapeutic targets exhibiting different pharmacology and tissue- or cell-specific site of action compared with receptor monomers or homo-oligomers. An ideal tool for validating this concept pharmacologically would be a hetero-oligomer selective ligand. We set out to develop and execute a 1536-well high-throughput screen of over 1 million compounds to detect potential hetero-oligomer selective ligands using a β-arrestin recruitment assay in U2OS cells coexpressing recombinant µ- and δ-opioid receptors. Hetero-oligomer selective ligands may bind to orthosteric or allosteric sites, and we might anticipate that the formation of hetero-oligomers may provide novel allosteric binding pockets for ligand binding. Therefore, our goal was to execute the screen in such a way as to identify positive allosteric modulators (PAMs) as well as agonists for µ, δ, and hetero-oligomeric receptors. While no hetero-oligomer selective ligands were identified (based on our selection criteria), this single screen did identify numerous µ- and δ-selective agonists and PAMs as well as nonselective agonists and PAMs. To our knowledge, these are the first µ- and δ-opioid receptor PAMs described in the literature.

  9. Opioid receptors in the gastrointestinal tract

    PubMed Central

    Holzer, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Opium is arguably one of the oldest herbal medicines, being used as analgesic, sedative and antidiarrheal drug for thousands of years. These effects mirror the actions of the endogenous opioid system and are mediated by the principal μ-, κ- and δ-opioid receptors. In the gut, met-enkephalin, leu-enkephalin, β-endorphin and dynorphin occur in both neurons and endocrine cells. When released, opioid peptides activate opioid receptors on the enteric circuitry controlling motility and secretion. As a result, inhibition of gastric emptying, increase in sphincter tone, induction of stationary motor patterns and blockade of peristalsis ensue. Together with inhibition of ion and fluid secretion, these effects cause constipation, one of the most frequent and troublesome adverse reactions of opioid analgesic therapy. Although laxatives are most frequently used to ameliorate opioid-induced bowel dysfunction, their efficacy is unsatisfactory. Specific antagonism of peripheral opioid receptors is a more rational approach. This goal is addressed by the use of opioid receptor antagonists with limited absorption such as oral prolonged-release naloxone and opioid receptor antagonists that do not penetrate the blood-brain barrier such as methylnaltrexone and alvimopan. Preliminary evidence indicates that peripherally restricted opioid receptor antagonists may act as prokinetic drugs in their own right. PMID:19345246

  10. Opioid receptor trafficking and interaction in nociceptors

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, X; Bao, L; Li, S

    2015-01-01

    Opiate analgesics such as morphine are often used for pain therapy. However, antinociceptive tolerance and dependence may develop with long-term use of these drugs. It was found that μ-opioid receptors can interact with δ-opioid receptors, and morphine antinociceptive tolerance can be reduced by blocking δ-opioid receptors. Recent studies have shown that μ- and δ-opioid receptors are co-expressed in a considerable number of small neurons in the dorsal root ganglion. The interaction of μ-opioid receptors with δ-opioid receptors in the nociceptive afferents is facilitated by the stimulus-induced cell-surface expression of δ-opioid receptors, and contributes to morphine tolerance. Further analysis of the molecular, cellular and neural circuit mechanisms that regulate the trafficking and interaction of opioid receptors and related signalling molecules in the pain pathway would help to elucidate the mechanism of opiate analgesia and improve pain therapy. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24611685

  11. Opioid receptor modulation of hedonic taste preference and food intake: a single-dose safety, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic investigation with GSK1521498, a novel μ-opioid receptor inverse agonist.

    PubMed

    Nathan, Pradeep J; O'Neill, Barry V; Bush, Mark A; Koch, Annelize; Tao, Wenli X; Maltby, Kay; Napolitano, Antonella; Brooke, Allison C; Skeggs, Andrew L; Herman, Craig S; Larkin, Andrew L; Ignar, Diane M; Richards, Duncan B; Williams, Pauline M; Bullmore, Edward T

    2012-04-01

    Endogenous opioids and µ-opioid receptors have been linked to hedonic and rewarding aspects of palatable food intake. The authors examined the safety, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic profile of GSK1521498, a µ-opioid receptor inverse agonist that is being investigated primarily for the treatment of overeating behavior in obesity. In healthy participants, GSK1521498 oral solution and capsule formulations were well tolerated up to a dose of 100 mg. After single doses (10-150 mg), the maximum concentration (C(max)) and area under the curve (AUC) in plasma increased in a dose-proportional manner. GSK1521498 selectively reduced sensory hedonic ratings of high-sugar and high-fat dairy products and caloric intake of high-fat/high-sucrose snack foods. These findings provide encouraging data in support of the development of GSK1521498 for the treatment of disorders of maladaptive ingestive behavior or compulsive consumption.

  12. Differential opioid agonist regulation of the mouse mu opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Blake, A D; Bot, G; Freeman, J C; Reisine, T

    1997-01-10

    Mu opioid receptors mediate the analgesia induced by morphine. Prolonged use of morphine causes tolerance development and dependence. To investigate the molecular basis of tolerance and dependence, the cloned mouse mu opioid receptor with an amino-terminal epitope tag was stably expressed in human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells, and the effects of prolonged opioid agonist treatment on receptor regulation were examined. In HEK 293 cells the expressed mu receptor showed high affinity, specific, saturable binding of radioligands and a pertussis toxin-sensitive inhibition of adenylyl cyclase. Pretreatment (1 h, 3 h, or overnight) of cells with 1 microM morphine or [D-Ala2MePhe4,Gly(ol)5]enkephalin (DAMGO) resulted in no apparent receptor desensitization, as assessed by opioid inhibition of forskolin-stimulated cAMP levels. In contrast, the morphine and DAMGO pretreatments (3 h) resulted in a 3-4-fold compensatory increase in forskolin-stimulated cAMP accumulation. The opioid agonists methadone and buprenorphine are used in the treatment of addiction because of a markedly lower abuse potential. Pretreatment of mu receptor-expressing HEK 293 cells with methadone or buprenorphine abolished the ability of opioids to inhibit adenylyl cyclase. No compensatory increase in forskolin-stimulated cAMP accumulation was found with methadone or buprenorphine; these opioids blocked the compensatory effects observed with morphine and DAMGO. Taken together, these results indicate that methadone and buprenorphine interact differently with the mouse mu receptor than either morphine or DAMGO. The ability of methadone and buprenorphine to desensitize the mu receptor and block the compensatory rise in forskolin-stimulated cAMP accumulation may be an underlying mechanism by which these agents are effective in the treatment of morphine addiction.

  13. The delta opioid receptor tool box.

    PubMed

    Vicente-Sanchez, Ana; Segura, Laura; Pradhan, Amynah A

    2016-12-03

    In recent years, the delta opioid receptor has attracted increasing interest as a target for the treatment of chronic pain and emotional disorders. Due to their therapeutic potential, numerous tools have been developed to study the delta opioid receptor from both a molecular and a functional perspective. This review summarizes the most commonly available tools, with an emphasis on their use and limitations. Here, we describe (1) the cell-based assays used to study the delta opioid receptor. (2) The features of several delta opioid receptor ligands, including peptide and non-peptide drugs. (3) The existing approaches to detect delta opioid receptors in fixed tissue, and debates that surround these techniques. (4) Behavioral assays used to study the in vivo effects of delta opioid receptor agonists; including locomotor stimulation and convulsions that are induced by some ligands, but not others. (5) The characterization of genetically modified mice used specifically to study the delta opioid receptor. Overall, this review aims to provide a guideline for the use of these tools with the final goal of increasing our understanding of delta opioid receptor physiology.

  14. Delta-opioid receptor antagonism leads to excessive ethanol consumption in mice with enhanced activity of the endogenous opioid system.

    PubMed

    Poznanski, Piotr; Lesniak, Anna; Korostynski, Michal; Szklarczyk, Klaudia; Lazarczyk, Marzena; Religa, Piotr; Bujalska-Zadrozny, Magdalena; Sadowski, Bogdan; Sacharczuk, Mariusz

    2017-05-15

    The opioid system modulates the central reinforcing effects of ethanol and participates in the etiology of addiction. However, the pharmacotherapy of ethanol dependence targeted on the opioid system is little effective and varies due to individual patients' sensitivity. In the present study, we used two mouse lines with high (HA) and low (LA) activity of the endogenous opioid system to analyze the effect of opioid receptor blockade on ethanol drinking behavior. We found that LA and HA lines characterized by divergent magnitudes of swim stress-induced analgesia also differ in ethanol intake and preference. Downregulation of the opioid system in LA mice was associated with increased ethanol consumption. Treatment with a non-selective opioid receptor antagonist (naloxone) had no effect on ethanol intake in this line. Surprisingly, in HA mice, the blockage of opioid receptors led to excessive ethanol consumption. Moreover, naloxone selectively induced high levels of anxiety- and depressive-like behaviors in HA mice which was attenuated by ethanol. With the use of specific opioid receptor antagonists we showed that the naloxone-induced increase in ethanol drinking in HA mice is mediated mainly by δ and to a lower extent by μ opioid receptors. The effect of δ-opioid receptor antagonism was abolished in HA mice carrying a C320T transition in the δ-opioid receptor gene (EU446125.1), which impairs this receptor's function. Our results indicate that high activity of the opioid system plays a protective role against ethanol dependence. Therefore, its blockage with opioid receptor antagonists may lead to a profound increase in ethanol consumption. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Ligand- and cell-dependent determinants of internalization and cAMP modulation by delta opioid receptor (DOR) agonists.

    PubMed

    Charfi, Iness; Nagi, Karim; Mnie-Filali, Ouissame; Thibault, Dominic; Balboni, Gianfranco; Schiller, Peter W; Trudeau, Louis-Eric; Pineyro, Graciela

    2014-04-01

    Signaling bias refers to G protein-coupled receptor ligand ability to preferentially activate one type of signal over another. Bias to evoke signaling as opposed to sequestration has been proposed as a predictor of opioid ligand potential for generating tolerance. Here we measured whether delta opioid receptor agonists preferentially inhibited cyclase activity over internalization in HEK cells. Efficacy (τ) and affinity (KA) values were estimated from functional data and bias was calculated from efficiency coefficients (log τ/KA). This approach better represented the data as compared to alternative methods that estimate bias exclusively from τ values. Log (τ/KA) coefficients indicated that SNC-80 and UFP-512 promoted cyclase inhibition more efficiently than DOR internalization as compared to DPDPE (bias factor for SNC-80: 50 and for UFP-512: 132). Molecular determinants of internalization were different in HEK293 cells and neurons with βarrs contributing to internalization in both cell types, while PKC and GRK2 activities were only involved in neurons. Rank orders of ligand ability to engage different internalization mechanisms in neurons were compared to rank order of E max values for cyclase assays in HEK cells. Comparison revealed a significant reversal in rank order for cyclase E max values and βarr-dependent internalization in neurons, indicating that these responses were ligand-specific. Despite this evidence, and because kinases involved in internalization were not the same across cellular backgrounds, it is not possible to assert if the magnitude and nature of bias revealed by rank orders of maximal responses is the same as the one measured in HEK cells.

  16. Modulation of μ-Opioid Receptor Signaling by RGS19 in SH-SY5Y Cells

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Qin

    2013-01-01

    Regulator of G-protein signaling protein 19 (RGS19), also known as Gα-interacting protein (GAIP), acts as a GTPase accelerating protein for Gαz as well as Gαi/o subunits. Interactions with GAIP-interacting protein N-terminus and GAIP-interacting protein C-terminus (GIPC) link RGS19 to a variety of intracellular proteins. Here we show that RGS19 is abundantly expressed in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells that also express µ- and δ- opioid receptors (MORs and DORs, respectively) and nociceptin receptors (NOPRs). Lentiviral delivery of short hairpin RNA specifically targeted to RGS19 reduced RGS19 protein levels by 69%, with a similar reduction in GIPC. In RGS19-depleted cells, there was an increase in the ability of MOR (morphine) but not of DOR [(4-[(R)-[(2S,5R)-4-allyl-2,5-dimethylpiperazin-1-yl](3-methoxyphenyl)methyl]-N,N-diethylbenzamide (SNC80)] or NOPR (nociceptin) agonists to inhibit forskolin-stimulated adenylyl cyclase and increase mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activity. Overnight treatment with either MOR [D-Ala, N-Me-Phe, Gly-ol5-enkephalin (DAMGO) or morphine] or DOR (D-Pen5-enkephalin or SNC80) agonists increased RGS19 and GIPC protein levels in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. The MOR-induced increase in RGS19 protein was prevented by pretreatment with pertussis toxin or the opioid antagonist naloxone. Protein kinase C (PKC) activation alone increased the level of RGS19 and inhibitors of PKC 5,6,7,13-tetrahydro-13-methyl-5-oxo-12H-indolo[2,3-a]pyrrolo[3,4-c]carbazole-12-propanenitrile and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase 1 2-(2-amino-3-methoxyphenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one, but not protein kinase A (H89), completely blocked DAMGO-induced RGS19 protein accumulation. The findings show that RGS19 and GIPC are jointly regulated, that RGS19 is a GTPase accelerating protein for MOR with selectivity over DOR and NOPR, and that chronic MOR or DOR agonist treatment increases RGS19 levels by a PKC and the MAPK pathway

  17. Modulation of μ-opioid receptor signaling by RGS19 in SH-SY5Y cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qin; Traynor, John R

    2013-02-01

    Regulator of G-protein signaling protein 19 (RGS19), also known as Gα-interacting protein (GAIP), acts as a GTPase accelerating protein for Gαz as well as Gαi/o subunits. Interactions with GAIP-interacting protein N-terminus and GAIP-interacting protein C-terminus (GIPC) link RGS19 to a variety of intracellular proteins. Here we show that RGS19 is abundantly expressed in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells that also express µ- and δ- opioid receptors (MORs and DORs, respectively) and nociceptin receptors (NOPRs). Lentiviral delivery of short hairpin RNA specifically targeted to RGS19 reduced RGS19 protein levels by 69%, with a similar reduction in GIPC. In RGS19-depleted cells, there was an increase in the ability of MOR (morphine) but not of DOR [(4-[(R)-[(2S,5R)-4-allyl-2,5-dimethylpiperazin-1-yl](3-methoxyphenyl)methyl]-N,N-diethylbenzamide (SNC80)] or NOPR (nociceptin) agonists to inhibit forskolin-stimulated adenylyl cyclase and increase mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activity. Overnight treatment with either MOR [D-Ala, N-Me-Phe, Gly-ol(5)-enkephalin (DAMGO) or morphine] or DOR (D-Pen(5)-enkephalin or SNC80) agonists increased RGS19 and GIPC protein levels in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. The MOR-induced increase in RGS19 protein was prevented by pretreatment with pertussis toxin or the opioid antagonist naloxone. Protein kinase C (PKC) activation alone increased the level of RGS19 and inhibitors of PKC 5,6,7,13-tetrahydro-13-methyl-5-oxo-12H-indolo[2,3-a]pyrrolo[3,4-c]carbazole-12-propanenitrile and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase 1 2-(2-amino-3-methoxyphenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one, but not protein kinase A (H89), completely blocked DAMGO-induced RGS19 protein accumulation. The findings show that RGS19 and GIPC are jointly regulated, that RGS19 is a GTPase accelerating protein for MOR with selectivity over DOR and NOPR, and that chronic MOR or DOR agonist treatment increases RGS19 levels by a PKC and the MAPK pathway

  18. Pharmacological Profiles of Oligomerized μ-Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Cynthia Wei-Sheng; Ho, Ing-Kang

    2013-01-01

    Opioids are widely prescribed pain relievers with multiple side effects and potential complications. They produce analgesia via G-protein-protein coupled receptors: μ-, δ-, κ-opioid and opioid receptor-like 1 receptors. Bivalent ligands targeted to the oligomerized opioid receptors might be the key to developing analgesics without undesired side effects and obtaining effective treatment for opioid addicts. In this review we will update the biological effects of μ-opioids on homo- or hetero-oligomerized μ-opioid receptor and discuss potential mechanisms through which bivalent ligands exert beneficial effects, including adenylate cyclase regulation and receptor-mediated signaling pathways. PMID:24709876

  19. Sex differences in opioid analgesia and addiction: interactions among opioid receptors and estrogen receptors

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Opioids are widely used as the pain reliever and also notorious for being addictive drugs. Sex differences in the opioid analgesia and addiction have been reported and investigated in human subjects and animal models. Yet, the molecular mechanism underlying the differences between males and females is still unclear. Here, we reviewed the literature describing the sex differences in analgesic responses and addiction liabilities to clinically relevant opioids. The reported interactions among opioids, estrogens, opioid receptors, and estrogen receptors are also evaluated. We postulate that the sex differences partly originated from the crosstalk among the estrogen and opioid receptors when stimulated by the exogenous opioids, possibly through common secondary messengers and the downstream gene transcriptional regulators. PMID:24010861

  20. Sex differences in opioid analgesia and addiction: interactions among opioid receptors and estrogen receptors.

    PubMed

    Lee, Cynthia Wei-Sheng; Ho, Ing-Kang

    2013-09-08

    Opioids are widely used as the pain reliever and also notorious for being addictive drugs. Sex differences in the opioid analgesia and addiction have been reported and investigated in human subjects and animal models. Yet, the molecular mechanism underlying the differences between males and females is still unclear. Here, we reviewed the literature describing the sex differences in analgesic responses and addiction liabilities to clinically relevant opioids. The reported interactions among opioids, estrogens, opioid receptors, and estrogen receptors are also evaluated. We postulate that the sex differences partly originated from the crosstalk among the estrogen and opioid receptors when stimulated by the exogenous opioids, possibly through common secondary messengers and the downstream gene transcriptional regulators.

  1. The automated radiosynthesis and purification of the opioid receptor antagonist, [6-O-methyl-11C]diprenorphine on the GE TRACERlab FXFE radiochemistry module.

    PubMed

    Fairclough, Michael; Prenant, Christian; Brown, Gavin; McMahon, Adam; Lowe, Jonathan; Jones, Anthony

    2014-05-15

    [6-O-Methyl-(11)C]diprenorphine ([(11)C]diprenorphine) is a positron emission tomography ligand used to probe the endogenous opioid system in vivo. Diprenorphine acts as an antagonist at all of the opioid receptor subtypes, that is, μ (mu), κ (kappa) and δ (delta). The radiosynthesis of [(11)C]diprenorphine using [(11)C]methyl iodide produced via the 'wet' method on a home-built automated radiosynthesis set-up has been described previously. Here, we describe a modified synthetic method to [(11)C]diprenorphine performed using [(11)C]methyl iodide produced via the gas phase method on a GE TRACERlab FXFE radiochemistry module. Also described is the use of [(11)C]methyl triflate as the carbon-11 methylating agent for the [(11)C]diprenorphine syntheses. [(11)C]Diprenorphine was produced to good manufacturing practice standards for use in a clinical setting. In comparison to previously reported [(11)C]diprenorphine radiosyntheisis, the method described herein gives a higher specific activity product which is advantageous for receptor occupancy studies. The radiochemical purity of [(11)C]diprenorphine is similar to what has been reported previously, although the radiochemical yield produced in the method described herein is reduced, an issue that is inherent in the gas phase radiosynthesis of [(11)C]methyl iodide. The yields of [(11)C]diprenorphine are nonetheless sufficient for clinical research applications. Other advantages of the method described herein are an improvement to both reproducibility and reliability of the production as well as simplification of the purification and formulation steps. We suggest that our automated radiochemistry route to [(11)C]diprenorphine should be the method of choice for routine [(11)C]diprenorphine productions for positron emission tomography studies, and the production process could easily be transferred to other radiochemistry modules such as the TRACERlab FX C pro.

  2. Opioid modulation of taste hedonics within the ventral striatum.

    PubMed

    Kelley, A E; Bakshi, V P; Haber, S N; Steininger, T L; Will, M J; Zhang, M

    2002-07-01

    There is a long-standing interest in the role of endogenous opioid peptides in feeding behavior and, in particular, in the modulation of food reward and palatability. Since drugs such as heroin, morphine, alcohol, and cannabinoids, interact with this system, there may be important common neural substrates between food and drug reward with regard to the brain's opioid systems. In this paper, we review the proposed functional role of opioid neurotransmission and mu opiate receptors within the nucleus accumbens and surrounding ventral striatum. Opioid compounds, particularly those selective for the mu receptor, induce a potent increase in food intake, sucrose, salt, saccharin, and ethanol intake. We have explored this phenomenon with regard to macronutrient selection, regional specificity, role of output structures, Fos mapping, analysis of motivational state, and enkephalin gene expression. We hypothesize that opioid-mediated mechanisms within ventral striatal medium spiny neurons mediate the affective or hedonic response to food ('liking' or food 'pleasure'). A further refinement of this hypothesis is that activation of ventral striatal opioids specifically encodes positive affect induced by tasty and/or calorically dense foods (such as sugar and fat), and promotes behaviors associated with this enhanced palatability. It is proposed that this brain mechanism was beneficial in evolutionary development for ensuring the consumption of relatively scarce, high-energy food sources. However, in modern times, with unlimited supplies of high-calorie food, it has contributed to the present epidemic of obesity.

  3. State-dependent μ-opioid modulation of social motivation.

    PubMed

    Loseth, Guro E; Ellingsen, Dan-Mikael; Leknes, Siri

    2014-01-01

    Social mammals engage in affiliative interactions both when seeking relief from negative affect and when searching for pleasure and joy. These two motivational states are both modulated by μ-opioid transmission. The μ-opioid receptor (MOR) system in the brain mediates pain relief and reward behaviors, and is implicated in social reward processing and affiliative bonding across mammalian species. However, pharmacological manipulation of the μ-opioid system has yielded opposite effects on rodents and primates: in rodents, social motivation is generally increased by MOR agonists and reduced by antagonists, whereas the opposite pattern has been shown in primates. Here, we address this paradox by taking into account differences in motivational state. We first review evidence for μ-opioid mediation of reward processing, emotion regulation, and affiliation in humans, non-human primates, rodents and other species. Based on the consistent cross-species similarities in opioid functioning, we propose a unified, state-dependent model for μ-opioid modulation of affiliation across the mammalian species. Finally, we show that this state-dependent model is supported by evidence from both rodent and primate studies, when species and age differences in social separation response are taken into account.

  4. State-dependent μ-opioid modulation of social motivation

    PubMed Central

    Loseth, Guro E.; Ellingsen, Dan-Mikael; Leknes, Siri

    2014-01-01

    Social mammals engage in affiliative interactions both when seeking relief from negative affect and when searching for pleasure and joy. These two motivational states are both modulated by μ-opioid transmission. The μ-opioid receptor (MOR) system in the brain mediates pain relief and reward behaviors, and is implicated in social reward processing and affiliative bonding across mammalian species. However, pharmacological manipulation of the μ-opioid system has yielded opposite effects on rodents and primates: in rodents, social motivation is generally increased by MOR agonists and reduced by antagonists, whereas the opposite pattern has been shown in primates. Here, we address this paradox by taking into account differences in motivational state. We first review evidence for μ-opioid mediation of reward processing, emotion regulation, and affiliation in humans, non-human primates, rodents and other species. Based on the consistent cross-species similarities in opioid functioning, we propose a unified, state-dependent model for μ-opioid modulation of affiliation across the mammalian species. Finally, we show that this state-dependent model is supported by evidence from both rodent and primate studies, when species and age differences in social separation response are taken into account. PMID:25565999

  5. Pharmacological profiles of opioid ligands at Kappa opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Gharagozlou, Parham; Hashemi, Ezzat; DeLorey, Timothy M; Clark, J David; Lameh, Jelveh

    2006-01-01

    Background The aim of the present study was to describe the activity of a set of opioid drugs, including partial agonists, in a human embryonic kidney cell system stably expressing only the mouse κ-opioid receptors. Receptor activation was assessed by measuring the inhibition of cyclic adenosine mono phosphate (cAMP) production stimulated by 5 μM forskolin. Intrinsic activities and potencies of these ligands were determined relative to the endogenous ligand dynorphin and the κ agonist with the highest intrinsic activity that was identified in this study, fentanyl. Results Among the ligands studied naltrexone, WIN 44,441 and dezocine, were classified as antagonists, while the remaining ligands were agonists. Intrinsic activity of agonists was assessed by determining the extent of inhibition of forskolin-stimulated cAMP production. The absolute levels of inhibition of cAMP production by each ligand was used to describe the rank order of intrinsic activity of the agonists; fentanyl = lofentanil ≥ hydromorphone = morphine = nalorphine ≥ etorphine ≥ xorphanol ≥ metazocine ≥ SKF 10047 = cyclazocine ≥ butorphanol > nalbuphine. The rank order of affinity of these ligands was; cyclazocine > naltrexone ≥ SKF 10047 ≥ xorphanol ≥ WIN 44,441 > nalorphine > butorphanol > nalbuphine ≥ lofentanil > dezocine ≥ metazocine ≥ morphine > hydromorphone > fentanyl. Conclusion These results elucidate the relative activities of a set of opioid ligands at κ-opioid receptor and can serve as the initial step in a systematic study leading to understanding of the mode of action of these opioid ligands at this receptor. PMID:16433932

  6. In Vivo Regulation of the μ Opioid Receptor: Role of the Endogenous Opioid Agents

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez-Nunez, Veronica; González, Ada Jimenez; Barreto-Valer, Katherine; Rodríguez, Raquel E

    2013-01-01

    It is well known that genotypic differences can account for the subject-specific responses to opiate administration. In this regard, the basal activity of the endogenous system (either at the receptor or ligand level) can modulate the effects of exogenous agonists as morphine and vice versa. The μ opioid receptor from zebrafish, dre-oprm1, binds endogenous peptides and morphine with similar affinities. Morphine administration during development altered the expression of the endogenous opioid propeptides proenkephalins and proopiomelanocortin. Treatment with opioid peptides (Met-enkephalin [Met-ENK], Met-enkephalin-Gly-Tyr [MEGY] and β-endorphin [β-END]) modulated dre-oprm1 expression during development. Knocking down the dre-oprm1 gene significantly modified the mRNA expression of the penk and pomc genes, thus indicating that oprm1 is involved in shaping penk and pomc expression. In addition, the absence of a functional oprm1 clearly disrupted the embryonic development, since proliferation was disorganized in the central nervous system of oprm1-morphant embryos: mitotic cells were found widespread through the optic tectum and were not restricted to the proliferative areas of the mid- and hindbrain. Transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) staining revealed that the number of apoptotic cells in the central nervous system (CNS) of morphants was clearly increased at 24-h postfertilization. These findings clarify the role of the endogenous opioid system in CNS development. Our results will also help unravel the complex feedback loops that modulate opioid activity and that may be involved in establishing a coordinated expression of both receptors and endogenous ligands. Further knowledge of the complex interactions between the opioid system and analgesic drugs will provide insights that may be relevant for analgesic therapy. PMID:23348513

  7. Nitric oxide and histone deacetylases modulate cocaine-induced mu-opioid receptor levels in PC12 cells

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Cocaine exposure has been reported to alter central μ-opioid receptor (MOR) expression in vivo. The present study employed an in vitro cellular model to explore possible mechanisms that may be involved in this action of cocaine. Methods To assess the effects of cocaine on MOR levels, two treatment regimens were tested in PC12 cells: single continuous or multiple intermittent. MOR protein levels were assessed by western blot analysis and quantitative PCR was used to determine relative MOR mRNA expression levels. To evaluate the role of nitric oxide (NO) and histone acetylation in cocaine-induced MOR expression, cells were pre-treated with the NO synthase inhibitor Nω-nitro-L-arginine methylester (L-NAME) or the non-selective histone acetyltransferase inhibitor curcumin. Results Both cocaine treatment regimens significantly increased MOR protein levels and protein stability, but only multiple intermittent treatments increased MOR mRNA levels as well as c-fos mRNA levels and activator protein 1 binding activity. Both regimens increased NO production, and pre-treatment with L-NAME prevented cocaine-induced increases in MOR protein and mRNA levels. Single and multiple cocaine treatment regimens inhibited histone deacetylase activity, and pre-treatment with curcumin prevented cocaine-induced up-regulation of MOR protein expression. Conclusions In the PC12 cell model, both NO and histone deacetylase activity regulate cocaine-induced MOR expression at both the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. Based on these novel findings, it is hypothesized that epigenetic mechanisms are implicated in cocaine’s action on MOR expression in neurons. PMID:23079001

  8. Effects of defeat stress on behavioral flexibility in males and females: modulation by the mu-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Laredo, Sarah A; Steinman, Michael Q; Robles, Cindee F; Ferrer, Emilio; Ragen, Benjamin J; Trainor, Brian C

    2015-02-01

    Behavioral flexibility is a component of executive functioning that allows individuals to adapt to changing environmental conditions. Independent lines of research indicate that the mu opioid receptor (MOR) is an important mediator of behavioral flexibility and responses to psychosocial stress. The current study bridges these two lines of research and tests the extent to which social defeat and MOR affect behavioral flexibility and whether sex moderates these effects in California mice (Peromyscus californicus). Males and females assigned to social defeat or control conditions were tested in a Barnes maze. In males, defeat impaired behavioral flexibility but not acquisition. Female performance was unaffected by defeat. MOR binding in defeated and control mice in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), striatum and hippocampus was examined via autoradiography. Stressed males had reduced MOR binding in the OFC whereas females were unaffected. The MOR antagonist beta-funaltrexamine (1 mg/kg) impaired performance in males naïve to defeat during the reversal phase but had no effect on females. Finally, we examined the effects of the MOR agonist morphine (2.5 and 5 mg/kg) on stressed mice. As expected, morphine improved behavioral flexibility in stressed males. The stress-induced deficits in behavioral flexibility in males are consistent with a proactive coping strategy, including previous observations that stressed male California mice exhibit strong social approach and aggression. Our pharmacological data suggest that a down-regulation of MOR signaling in males may contribute to sex differences in behavioral flexibility following stress. This is discussed in the framework of coping strategies for individuals with mood disorders.

  9. Co-administration of delta- and mu-opioid receptor agonists promotes peripheral opioid receptor function

    PubMed Central

    Schramm, Cicely L.; Honda, Christopher N.

    2010-01-01

    Enhancement of peripheral opioid analgesia following tissue injury or inflammation in animal models is well-documented, but clinical results of peripheral opioid therapy remain inconsistent. Previous studies in the central nervous system have shown that co-administration of μ- and δ-opioid receptor agonists can enhance analgesic outcomes; however, less is known about the functional consequences of opioid receptor interactions in the periphery. The present study examines the effects of intraplantar injection of the μ- and δ-opioid receptor agonists, morphine and deltorphin, alone and in combination on behavioral tests of nociception in naïve rats and on potassium-evoked release of CGRP from sciatic nerves of naïve rats. Neither drug alone affected nociceptive behaviors or CGRP release. Two separate measures of mechanical nociceptive sensitivity remained unchanged after co-administration of the two drugs. In contrast, when deltorphin was co-injected with morphine, dose-dependent and peripherally-restricted increases in paw withdrawal latencies to radiant heat were observed. Similarly, concentration-dependent inhibition of CGRP release was observed when deltorphin and morphine were administered in sequence prior to potassium stimulation. However, no inhibition was observed when morphine was administered prior to deltorphin. All combined opioid effects were blocked by co-application of antagonists. Deltorphin exposure also enhanced the in vivo and in vitro effects of another μ-opioid receptor agonist, DAMGO. Together, these results suggest that under normal conditions, δ-opioid receptor agonists enhance the effect of μ-opioid receptor agonists in the periphery, and local co-administration of δ- and μ-opioid receptor agonists may improve results of peripheral opioid therapy for the treatment of pain. PMID:20970925

  10. Molecular Pharmacology of δ-Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Gendron, Louis; Cahill, Catherine M.; von Zastrow, Mark; Schiller, Peter W.

    2016-01-01

    Opioids are among the most effective analgesics available and are the first choice in the treatment of acute severe pain. However, partial efficacy, a tendency to produce tolerance, and a host of ill-tolerated side effects make clinically available opioids less effective in the management of chronic pain syndromes. Given that most therapeutic opioids produce their actions via µ-opioid receptors (MOPrs), other targets are constantly being explored, among which δ-opioid receptors (DOPrs) are being increasingly considered as promising alternatives. This review addresses DOPrs from the perspective of cellular and molecular determinants of their pharmacological diversity. Thus, DOPr ligands are examined in terms of structural and functional variety, DOPrs’ capacity to engage a multiplicity of canonical and noncanonical G protein–dependent responses is surveyed, and evidence supporting ligand-specific signaling and regulation is analyzed. Pharmacological DOPr subtypes are examined in light of the ability of DOPr to organize into multimeric arrays and to adopt multiple active conformations as well as differences in ligand kinetics. Current knowledge on DOPr targeting to the membrane is examined as a means of understanding how these receptors are especially active in chronic pain management. Insight into cellular and molecular mechanisms of pharmacological diversity should guide the rational design of more effective, longer-lasting, and better-tolerated opioid analgesics for chronic pain management. PMID:27343248

  11. Opioid research in amphibians: an alternative pain model yielding insights on the evolution of opioid receptors

    PubMed Central

    Stevens, Craig W.

    2011-01-01

    This review summarizes the work from our laboratory investigating mechanisms of opioid analgesia using the Northern grass frog, Rana pipiens. Over the last dozen years, we have accumulated data on the characterization of behavioral effects after opioid administration on radioligand binding by using opioid agonist and antagonist ligands in amphibian brain and spinal cord homogenates, and by cloning and sequencing opioid-like receptor cDNA from amphibian central nervous system (CNS) tissues. The relative analgesic potency of mu, delta, and kappa opioids is highly correlated between frogs and other mammals, including humans. Radioligand binding studies using selective opioid agonists show a similar selectivity profile in amphibians and mammals. In contrast, opioid antagonists that are highly selective for mammalian mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors were not selective in behavioral and binding studies in amphibians. Three opioid-like receptor cDNAs were cloned and sequenced from amphibian brain tissues and are orthologs to mammalian mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors. Bioinformatics analysis of the three types of opioid receptor cDNAs from all vertebrate species with full datasets gave a pattern of the molecular evolution of opioid receptors marked by the divergence of mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptor sequences during vertebrate evolution. This divergence in receptor amino acid sequence in later-evolved vertebrates underlies the hypothesis that opioid receptors are more type-selective in mammals than in nonmammalian vertebrates. The apparent order of receptor type evolution is kappa, then delta, and, most recently, the mu opioid receptor. Finally, novel bioinformatics analyses suggest that conserved extracellular receptor domains determine the type selectivity of vertebrate opioid receptors. PMID:15464208

  12. Opioid research in amphibians: an alternative pain model yielding insights on the evolution of opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Stevens, Craig W

    2004-10-01

    This review summarizes the work from our laboratory investigating mechanisms of opioid analgesia using the Northern grass frog, Rana pipiens. Over the last dozen years, we have accumulated data on the characterization of behavioral effects after opioid administration on radioligand binding by using opioid agonist and antagonist ligands in amphibian brain and spinal cord homogenates, and by cloning and sequencing opioid-like receptor cDNA from amphibian central nervous system (CNS) tissues. The relative analgesic potency of mu, delta, and kappa opioids is highly correlated between frogs and other mammals, including humans. Radioligand binding studies using selective opioid agonists show a similar selectivity profile in amphibians and mammals. In contrast, opioid antagonists that are highly selective for mammalian mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors were not selective in behavioral and binding studies in amphibians. Three opioid-like receptor cDNAs were cloned and sequenced from amphibian brain tissues and are orthologs to mammalian mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors. Bioinformatics analysis of the three types of opioid receptor cDNAs from all vertebrate species with full datasets gave a pattern of the molecular evolution of opioid receptors marked by the divergence of mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptor sequences during vertebrate evolution. This divergence in receptor amino acid sequence in later-evolved vertebrates underlies the hypothesis that opioid receptors are more type-selective in mammals than in nonmammalian vertebrates. The apparent order of receptor type evolution is kappa, then delta, and, most recently, the mu opioid receptor. Finally, novel bioinformatics analyses suggest that conserved extracellular receptor domains determine the type selectivity of vertebrate opioid receptors.

  13. Dual κ-agonist/μ-antagonist opioid receptor modulation reduces levodopa-induced dyskinesia and corrects dysregulated striatal changes in the nonhuman primate model of Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Potts, Lisa F; Park, Eun S; Woo, Jong-Min; Dyavar Shetty, Bhagya L; Singh, Arun; Braithwaite, Steven P; Voronkov, Michael; Papa, Stella M; Mouradian, M Maral

    2015-06-01

    Effective medical management of levodopa-induced dyskinesia (LID) remains an unmet need for patients with Parkinson disease (PD). Changes in opioid transmission in the basal ganglia associated with LID suggest a therapeutic opportunity. Here we determined the impact of modulating both mu and kappa opioid receptor signaling using the mixed agonist/antagonist analgesic nalbuphine in reducing LID and its molecular markers in the nonhuman primate model. 1-Methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated macaques with advanced parkinsonism and reproducible LID received a range of nalbuphine doses or saline subcutaneously as: (1) monotherapy, (2) acute coadministration with levodopa, and (3) chronic coadministration for 1 month. Animals were assessed by blinded examiners for motor disability and LID severity using standardized rating scales. Plasma levodopa levels were determined with and without nalbuphine, and postmortem brain samples were subjected to Western blot analyses. Nalbuphine reduced LID in a dose-dependent manner by 48% (p < 0.001) without compromising the anti-PD effect of levodopa or changing plasma levodopa levels. There was no tolerance to the anti-LID effect of nalbuphine given chronically. Nalbuphine coadministered with levodopa was well tolerated and did not cause sedation. Nalbuphine monotherapy had no effect on motor disability. Striatal tissue analyses showed that nalbuphine cotherapy blocks several molecular correlates of LID, including overexpression of ΔFosB, prodynorphin, dynorphin A, cyclin-dependent kinase 5, and increased phosphorylation of DARPP-32 at threonine-34. Nalbuphine reverses the molecular milieu in the striatum associated with LID and is a safe and effective anti-LID agent in the primate model of PD. These findings support repurposing this analgesic for the treatment of LID. © 2015 American Neurological Association.

  14. Opioid receptor mechanisms at the hypoglossal motor pool and effects on tongue muscle activity in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Hajiha, Mohammad; DuBord, Marq-André; Liu, Hattie; Horner, Richard L

    2009-01-01

    Opioids can modulate breathing and predispose to respiratory depression by actions at various central nervous system sites, but the mechanisms operating at respiratory motor nuclei have not been studied. This study tests the hypotheses that (i) local delivery of the μ-opioid receptor agonist fentanyl into the hypoglossal motor nucleus (HMN) will suppress genioglossus activity in vivo, (ii) a component of this suppression is mediated by opioid-induced acetylcholine release acting at muscarinic receptors, and (iii) δ- and κ-opioid receptors also modulate genioglossus activity. Seventy-two isoflurane-anaesthetised, tracheotomised, spontaneously breathing rats were studied during microdialysis perfusion into the HMN of (i) fentanyl and naloxone (μ-opioid receptor antagonist), (ii) fentanyl with and without co-application of muscarinic receptor antagonists, and (iii) δ- and κ-opioid receptor agonists and antagonists. The results showed (i) that fentanyl at the HMN caused a suppression of genioglossus activity (P < 0.001) that reversed with naloxone (P < 0.001), (ii) that neither atropine nor scopolamine affected the fentanyl-induced suppression of genioglossus activity, and (iii) that δ-, but not κ-, opioid receptor stimulation also suppressed genioglossus activity (P= 0.036 and P= 0.402 respectively). We conclude that μ-opioid receptor stimulation suppresses motor output from a central respiratory motoneuronal pool that activates genioglossus muscle, and this suppression does not involve muscarinic receptor-mediated inhibition. This μ-opioid receptor-induced suppression of tongue muscle activity by effects at the hypoglossal motor pool may underlie the clinical concern regarding adverse upper airway function with μ-opioid analgesics. The inhibitory effects of μ- and δ-opioid receptors at the HMN also indicate an influence of endogenous enkephalins and endorphins in respiratory motor control. PMID:19403616

  15. Cortisol Stress Response in Men and Women Modulated Differentially by the Mu-Opioid Receptor Gene Polymorphism OPRM1 A118G

    PubMed Central

    Lovallo, William R; Enoch, Mary-Anne; Acheson, Ashley; Cohoon, Andrew J; Sorocco, Kristen H; Hodgkinson, Colin A; Vincent, Andrea S; Glahn, David C; Goldman, David

    2015-01-01

    Differences in stress reactivity may affect long-term health outcomes, but there is little information on how these differences arise. The stress axis is regulated by, in part, the endogenous opioid, beta-endorphin, acting on mu-opioid receptors. Persons carrying one or two copies of the G allele of the mu-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1 A118G) may have higher receptor binding for beta-endorphin compared with AA homozygotes that may contribute to individual differences in cortisol reactivity to stress, leading to a relative blunting of cortisol stress reactivity in G allele genotypes. We measured cortisol in 251 young adults (69 GA/GG vs 182 AA genotypes) exposed to mental arithmetic plus public speaking stress relative to a resting control day. Women had smaller cortisol responses than men (F=10.2, p=0.002), and women with GA or GG genotypes (N=39) had an absence of cortisol response relative to AA carriers (N=110) (F=18.4, p<0.0001). Male genotypes had no such difference in response (F=0.29). Cortisol response following mu-opioid receptor blockade using naltrexone in 119 of these subjects unmasked a greater tonic opioid inhibition of cortisol secretion in women (N=64), consistent with their blunted stress reactivity. Compared with men, women may have cortisol stress responses that are more heavily regulated by endogenous opioid mechanisms, and the OPRM1 GA/GG genotypes may affect females differentially relative to males. Diminished cortisol responses to stress may have consequences for health behaviors in women with GA/GG genotypes. PMID:25881118

  16. Cortisol Stress Response in Men and Women Modulated Differentially by the Mu-Opioid Receptor Gene Polymorphism OPRM1 A118G.

    PubMed

    Lovallo, William R; Enoch, Mary-Anne; Acheson, Ashley; Cohoon, Andrew J; Sorocco, Kristen H; Hodgkinson, Colin A; Vincent, Andrea S; Glahn, David C; Goldman, David

    2015-10-01

    Differences in stress reactivity may affect long-term health outcomes, but there is little information on how these differences arise. The stress axis is regulated by, in part, the endogenous opioid, beta-endorphin, acting on mu-opioid receptors. Persons carrying one or two copies of the G allele of the mu-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1 A118G) may have higher receptor binding for beta-endorphin compared with AA homozygotes that may contribute to individual differences in cortisol reactivity to stress, leading to a relative blunting of cortisol stress reactivity in G allele genotypes. We measured cortisol in 251 young adults (69 GA/GG vs 182 AA genotypes) exposed to mental arithmetic plus public speaking stress relative to a resting control day. Women had smaller cortisol responses than men (F=10.2, p=0.002), and women with GA or GG genotypes (N=39) had an absence of cortisol response relative to AA carriers (N=110) (F=18.4, p<0.0001). Male genotypes had no such difference in response (F=0.29). Cortisol response following mu-opioid receptor blockade using naltrexone in 119 of these subjects unmasked a greater tonic opioid inhibition of cortisol secretion in women (N=64), consistent with their blunted stress reactivity. Compared with men, women may have cortisol stress responses that are more heavily regulated by endogenous opioid mechanisms, and the OPRM1 GA/GG genotypes may affect females differentially relative to males. Diminished cortisol responses to stress may have consequences for health behaviors in women with GA/GG genotypes.

  17. Opioid receptors: Structural and mechanistic insights into pharmacology and signaling

    PubMed Central

    Shang, Yi; Filizola, Marta

    2015-01-01

    Opioid receptors are important drug targets for pain management, addiction, and mood disorders. Although substantial research on these important subtypes of G protein-coupled receptors has been conducted over the past two decades to discover ligands with higher specificity and diminished side effects, currently used opioid therapeutics remain suboptimal. Luckily, recent advances in structural biology of opioid receptors provide unprecedented insights into opioid receptor pharmacology and signaling. We review here a few recent studies that have used the crystal structures of opioid receptors as a basis for revealing mechanistic details of signal transduction mediated by these receptors, and for the purpose of drug discovery. PMID:25981301

  18. Opioid receptors: Structural and mechanistic insights into pharmacology and signaling.

    PubMed

    Shang, Yi; Filizola, Marta

    2015-09-15

    Opioid receptors are important drug targets for pain management, addiction, and mood disorders. Although substantial research on these important subtypes of G protein-coupled receptors has been conducted over the past two decades to discover ligands with higher specificity and diminished side effects, currently used opioid therapeutics remain suboptimal. Luckily, recent advances in structural biology of opioid receptors provide unprecedented insights into opioid receptor pharmacology and signaling. We review here a few recent studies that have used the crystal structures of opioid receptors as a basis for revealing mechanistic details of signal transduction mediated by these receptors, and for the purpose of drug discovery.

  19. Exposure to the Selective κ-Opioid Receptor Agonist Salvinorin A Modulates the Behavioral and Molecular Effects of Cocaine in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Chartoff, Elena H; Potter, David; Damez-Werno, Diane; Cohen, Bruce M; Carlezon, William A

    2008-01-01

    Stress and chronic exposure to drugs of abuse can trigger addictive and depressive disorders. Both stimuli increase activity of dynorphin, a neuropeptide that acts at κ-opioid receptors (KORs). In humans, KOR agonists cause dysphoria, raising the possibility that dynorphin modulates the depressive-like effects of stress and chronic drug use. We examined if KOR activation alters sensitivity to stimulant drugs by assessing the effects of the selective KOR agonist, salvinorin A (SalvA), on cocaine-induced locomotor activity and c-Fos expression. Acute administration of SalvA blocked the locomotor-stimulant effects of cocaine, whereas repeated SalvA together with concomitant exposure to activity testing chambers potentiated the locomotor response to a cocaine challenge. In contrast, repeated SalvA administered in home cages rather than the activity chambers failed to potentiate the locomotor response to a cocaine challenge. One potential explanation for these findings is that activation of KORs disrupts context conditioning: acute locomotor responses to SalvA alone did not fully habituate with repeated testing in the activity chambers. The effects of SalvA on locomotor activity paralleled its effects on cocaine-induced c-Fos expression in the dorsal striatum: acute SalvA attenuated cocaine-induced c-Fos, whereas repeated SalvA potentiated it when administered in the activity chambers but not the home cage. Acute SalvA also blocked the locomotor stimulant effects of the DI receptor agonist SKF 82958, whereas repeated SalvA potentiated these effects when administered in the activity chambers. These findings suggest that SalvA regulates the stimulant effects of cocaine through interactions with DI receptor-mediated signaling in the dorsal striatum. PMID:18185499

  20. Regulation and Functional Implications of Opioid Receptor Splicing in Opioid Pharmacology and HIV Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Regan, Patrick M.; Langford, T. Dianne; Khalili, Kamel

    2015-01-01

    Despite the identification and characterization of four opioid receptor subtypes and the genes from which they are encoded, pharmacological data does not conform to the predications of a four opioid receptor model. Instead, current studies of opioid pharmacology suggest the existence of additional receptor subtypes; however, no additional opioid receptor subtype has been identified to date. It is now understood that this discrepancy is due to the generation of multiple isoforms of opioid receptor subtypes. While several mechanisms are utilized to generate these isoforms, the primary mechanism involves alternative splicing of the pre-mRNA transcript. Extensive alternative splicing patterns for opioid receptors have since been identified and discrepancies in opioid pharmacology are now partially attributed to variable expression of these isoforms. Recent studies have been successful in characterizing the localization of these isoforms as well as their specificity in ligand binding; however, the regulation of opioid receptor splicing specificity is poorly characterized. Furthermore, the functional significance of individual receptor isoforms and the extent to which opioid- and/or HIV-mediated changes in the opioid receptor isoform profile contributes to altered opioid pharmacology or the well-known physiological role of opioids in the exacerbation of HIV neurocognitive dysfunction is unknown. As such, the current review details constitutive splicing mechanisms as well as the specific architecture of opioid receptor genes, transcripts, and receptors in order to highlight the current understanding of opioid receptor isoforms, potential mechanisms of their regulation and signaling, and their functional significance in both opioid pharmacology and HIV-associated neuropathology. PMID:26529364

  1. Polymorphism in the µ-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1) modulates neural processing of physical pain, social rejection and error processing.

    PubMed

    Bonenberger, M; Plener, P L; Groschwitz, R C; Grön, G; Abler, B

    2015-09-01

    Variations of the µ-opioid receptor gene OPRM1 have been shown to modulate pain perception with some evidence pointing towards a modulation of not only physical but also "psychological pain". In line with suggestions of a common neural network involved in the processing of physical pain and negative and distressing stimuli, like social rejection as a psychologically harmful event, we examined the influence of the A118G polymorphism on the neural processing of physical and non-physical pain. Using fMRI, we investigated a sample of 23 females with the more frequent AA genotype, and eight females with the relatively rare but more pain-sensitive AG genotype during electrical stimulation to the dorsum of the non-dominant hand. Non-physical pain was investigated using Cyberball, a virtual ball-tossing game, to induce experiences of non-self-dependent social rejection. A Go/NoGo task with an increased risk of self-dependent erroneous performance was used as a control task to investigate the effects of negative feedback as a more cognitive form of distress. Relative to A118G homozygous A-allele carriers, G-allele carriers showed significantly increased activation of the supplementary motor area/superior frontal gyrus and the precentral gyrus during electrical stimulation. Increased activation of the secondary sensorimotor cortex (SII) was found during social exclusion and during negative feedback. We demonstrate that brain regions particularly related to the somatosensory component of pain processing are modulated by variations in OPRM1. Influences were evident for both physical and psychological pain processing supporting the assumption of shared neural pathways.

  2. Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonist and Brain Ischemia

    PubMed Central

    Chunhua, Chen; Chunhua, Xi; Megumi, Sugita; Renyu, Liu

    2014-01-01

    Opioid receptors, especially Kappa opioid receptor (KOR) play an important role in the pathophysiological process of cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury. Previously accepted KOR agonists activity has included anti-nociception, cardiovascular, anti-pruritic, diuretic, and antitussive effects, while compelling evidence from various ischemic animal models indicate that KOR agonist have neuroprotective effects through various mechanisms. In this review, we aimed to demonstrate the property of KOR agonist and its role in global and focal cerebral ischemia. Based on current preclinical research, the KOR agonists may be useful as a neuroprotective agent. The recent discovery of salvinorin A, highly selective non-opioid KOR agonist, offers a new tool to study the role of KOR in brain HI injury and the protective effects of KOR agonist. The unique pharmacological profile of salvinorin A along with the long history of human usage provides its high candidacy as a potential alternative medication for brain HI injury. PMID:25574482

  3. Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonist and Brain Ischemia.

    PubMed

    Chunhua, Chen; Chunhua, Xi; Megumi, Sugita; Renyu, Liu

    2014-01-01

    Opioid receptors, especially Kappa opioid receptor (KOR) play an important role in the pathophysiological process of cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury. Previously accepted KOR agonists activity has included anti-nociception, cardiovascular, anti-pruritic, diuretic, and antitussive effects, while compelling evidence from various ischemic animal models indicate that KOR agonist have neuroprotective effects through various mechanisms. In this review, we aimed to demonstrate the property of KOR agonist and its role in global and focal cerebral ischemia. Based on current preclinical research, the KOR agonists may be useful as a neuroprotective agent. The recent discovery of salvinorin A, highly selective non-opioid KOR agonist, offers a new tool to study the role of KOR in brain HI injury and the protective effects of KOR agonist. The unique pharmacological profile of salvinorin A along with the long history of human usage provides its high candidacy as a potential alternative medication for brain HI injury.

  4. The δ Opioid Receptor Agonist SNC80 Selectively Activates Heteromeric μ–δ Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Coexpressed and colocalized μ- and δ-opioid receptors have been established to exist as heteromers in cultured cells and in vivo. However the biological significance of opioid receptor heteromer activation is less clear. To explore this significance, the efficacy of selective activation of opioid receptors by SNC80 was assessed in vitro in cells singly and coexpressing opioid receptors using a chimeric G-protein-mediated calcium fluorescence assay, SNC80 produced a substantially more robust response in cells expressing μ–δ heteromers than in all other cell lines. Intrathecal SNC80 administration in μ- and δ-opioid receptor knockout mice produced diminished antinociceptive activity compared with wild type. The combined in vivo and in vitro results suggest that SNC80 selectively activates μ–δ heteromers to produce maximal antinociception. These data contrast with the current view that SNC80 selectively activates δ-opioid receptor homomers to produce antinociception. Thus, the data suggest that heteromeric μ–δ receptors should be considered as a target when SNC80 is employed as a pharmacological tool in vivo. PMID:22860219

  5. Splice variation of the mu-opioid receptor and its effect on the action of opioids.

    PubMed

    Gretton, Sophy K; Droney, Joanne

    2014-11-01

    An individual's response to opioids is influenced by a complex combination of genetic, molecular and phenotypic factors.Intra- and inter-individual variations in response to mu opioids have led to the suggestion that mu-opioid receptor subtypes exist.Scientists have now proven that mu-opioid receptor subtypes exist and that they occur through a mechanism promoting protein diversity, called alternative splicing.The ability of mu opioids to differentially activate splice variants may explain some of the clinical differences observed between mu opioids.This article examines how differential activation of splice variants by mu opioids occurs through alternative mu-opioid receptor binding, through differential receptor activation, and as a result of the distinct distribution of variants located regionally and at the cellular level.

  6. Opioid Receptors: Toward Separation of Analgesic from Undesirable Effects

    PubMed Central

    Law, P.Y.; Reggio, Patricia H.; Loh, H.H.

    2013-01-01

    The use of opioid analgesics for pain has always been hampered by their many side effects; in particular, the addictive liability associated with chronic use. Recently, attempts to develop analgesic agents with reduced side effects have targeted either the putative opioid receptor splice variants or the receptor heterooligomers. This review discusses the potential for receptor splice variant- and the hetero-oligomer-based discovery of new opioid analgesics. We also examine an alternative approach of using receptor mutants for pain management. Finally, we discuss the role of the biased agonism observed and the recently reported opioid receptor crystal structures in guiding the future development of opioid analgesics PMID:23598157

  7. Opioid receptors: toward separation of analgesic from undesirable effects.

    PubMed

    Law, Ping-Yee; Reggio, Patricia H; Loh, Horace H

    2013-06-01

    The use of opioid analgesics for pain has always been hampered by their many side effects; in particular, the addictive liability associated with chronic use. Recently, attempts to develop analgesic agents with reduced side effects have targeted either the putative opioid receptor splice variants or the receptor hetero-oligomers. This review discusses the potential for receptor splice variant- and the hetero-oligomer-based discovery of new opioid analgesics. We also examine an alternative approach of using receptor mutants for pain management. Finally, we discuss the role of the biased agonism observed and the recently reported opioid receptor crystal structures in guiding the future development of opioid analgesics.

  8. Autoradiographic localization of mu and delta opioid receptors in the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system

    SciTech Connect

    Dilts, R.P. Jr.

    1989-01-01

    In vitro autoradiographic techniques were coupled with selective chemical lesions of the A10 dopamine cells and intrinsic perikarya of the region to delineate the anatomical localization of mu and delta opioid receptors, as well as, neurotensin receptors. Mu opioid receptors were labeled with {sup 125}I-DAGO. Delta receptors were labeled with {sup 125}I-DPDPE. Neurotensin receptors were labeled with {sup 125}I-NT3. Unilateral lesions of the dopamine perikarya were produced by injections of 6-OHDA administered in the ventral mesencephalon. Unilateral lesions of intrinsic perikarya were induced by injections of quinolinic acid in to the A10 dopamine cell region. Unilateral lesions produced with 6-OHDA resulted in the loss of neurotensin receptors in the A10 region and within the terminal fields. Mu opioid receptors were unaffected by this treatment, but delta opioid receptors increased in the contralateral striatum and nucleus accumbens following 6-OHDA administration. Quinolinic acid produced a reduction of mu opioid receptors within the A10 region with a concomitant reduction in neurotensin receptors in both the cell body region and terminal fields. These results are consistent with a variety of biochemical and behavioral data which suggest the indirect modulation of dopamine transmission by the opioids. In contrast these results strongly indicate a direct modulation of the mesolimbic dopamine system by neurotensin.

  9. Opioid receptors: distinct roles in mood disorders

    PubMed Central

    Lutz, Pierre-Eric; Kieffer, Brigitte L.

    2012-01-01

    The roles of opioid receptors in pain and addiction have been extensively studied, but their function in mood disorders has received less attention. Accumulating evidence from animal research reveal that mu, delta and kappa opioid receptors (MORs, DORs and KORs, respectively) exert highly distinct controls over mood-related processes. DOR agonists and KOR antagonists have promising antidepressant potential, whereas the risk-benefit ratio of currently available MOR agonists as antidepressants remain difficult to evaluate, in addition to their inherent abuse liability. At present, both human and animal studies have mainly examined MORs in the etiology of depressive disorders, and future studies will address delta and kappa receptor function in established and emerging neurobiological aspects of depression, including neurogenesis, neurodevelopment and social behaviors. PMID:23219016

  10. The role of the dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system in anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Hang, Ai; Wang, Yu-jun; He, Ling; Liu, Jing-gen

    2015-01-01

    Anxiety disorders are the most common and prevalent forms of psychiatric disease, although the biological basis of anxiety is not well understood. The dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system is widely distributed in the central nervous system and has been shown to play a critical role in modulating mood and emotional behaviors. In the present review, we summarize current literature relating to the role played by the dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system in anxiety and κ opioid receptor antagonists as potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of anxiety disorders. PMID:25982631

  11. The role of the dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system in anxiety.

    PubMed

    Hang, Ai; Wang, Yu-jun; He, Ling; Liu, Jing-gen

    2015-07-01

    Anxiety disorders are the most common and prevalent forms of psychiatric disease, although the biological basis of anxiety is not well understood. The dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system is widely distributed in the central nervous system and has been shown to play a critical role in modulating mood and emotional behaviors. In the present review, we summarize current literature relating to the role played by the dynorphin/κ opioid receptor system in anxiety and κ opioid receptor antagonists as potential therapeutic agents for the treatment of anxiety disorders.

  12. A novel opioid mechanism seems to modulate phagocytosis in Tetrahymena.

    PubMed

    Renaud, F L; Colon, I; Lebron, J; Ortiz, N; Rodriguez, F; Cadilla, C

    1995-01-01

    We have previously reported that a beta-endorphin-like substance inhibits phagocytosis in Tetrahymena perhaps by a mu-like opioid receptor. We now report a further characterization of the elements involved in the signal transduction mechanism of this opioid. Affinity chromatography followed by immunoblots of both intracellular extracts and extracellular medium reveal the presence of two main proteins of 64 and 75 kDa. These molecular weights are much higher than that of any known opioid peptide or precursor protein and suggest that we may be dealing with either a novel opioid or with proteins that by chance cross-react with anti-beta-endorphin antibody. Nevertheless, when the biological activity of these proteins was tested it was found that they had an effect similar to that of mammalian beta-endorphin, namely inhibition of phagocytosis by a naloxone-reversible mechanism. We have probed a size-selected Tetrahymena library with a pro-opiomelanocortin probe and have obtained several positive clones; the sequencing of their inserts should establish whether we are dealing with a bona fide member of the opioid family. Another aspect we have been studying is the G-proteins which appear to be involved in the modulation of phagocytosis. We have found, by means of Western blotting (using an antibody against the conserved GTP-binding region of the alpha-subunit), two bands of 51 and 59 kDa; no alpha-subunit of 59 kDa had been reported previously and may represent a novel G-protein. In spite of these differences, the opioid signal transduction mechanism appears to remarkably resemble that present in more complex organisms.

  13. Kappa-Opioid Receptor Signaling in the Striatum as a Potential Modulator of Dopamine Transmission in Cocaine Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Trifilieff, Pierre; Martinez, Diana

    2013-01-01

    Cocaine addiction is accompanied by a decrease in striatal dopamine signaling, measured as a decrease in dopamine D2 receptor binding as well as blunted dopamine release in the striatum. These alterations in dopamine transmission have clinical relevance, and have been shown to correlate with cocaine-seeking behavior and response to treatment for cocaine dependence. However, the mechanisms contributing to the hypodopaminergic state in cocaine addiction remain unknown. Here we review the positron emission tomography (PET) imaging studies showing alterations in D2 receptor binding potential and dopamine transmission in cocaine abusers and their significance in cocaine-seeking behavior. Based on animal and human studies, we propose that the kappa receptor/dynorphin system, because of its impact on dopamine transmission and upregulation following cocaine exposure, could contribute to the hypodopaminergic state reported in cocaine addiction, and could thus be a relevant target for treatment development. PMID:23760592

  14. Differential modulation of methamphetamine-mediated behavioral sensitization by overexpression of Mu opioid receptors in nucleus accumbens and ventral tegmental area.

    PubMed

    Kuo, Chi-Chung; Shen, Hui; Harvey, Brandon K; Yu, Seong-Jin; Kopajtic, Theresa; Hinkle, Josh J; Kyrkanides, Stephanos; Katz, Jonathan L; Wang, Yun

    2016-02-01

    Repeated administration of methamphetamine (Meth) induces behavioral sensitization which is characterized by a progressive increase in locomotor response after each injection. Previous studies have shown that Mu opioid receptors (MORs) can regulate Meth-mediated behavioral sensitization. However, the reported interactions are controversial; systemic activation of MORs either enhanced or suppressed Meth sensitization. It is possible that alteration of Meth sensitization after systemic administration of MOR ligands reflects the sum of distinct MOR reactions in multiple brain regions. The purpose of the present study was to examine the actions of MORs on Meth sensitization after regionally selective overexpression of human MOR through an AAV6-based gene delivery system. We demonstrated that adeno-associated virus (AAV)-MOR increased MOR immunoreactivity and binding in vitro. AAV-MOR or AAV-green fluorescent protein (GFP) was injected into the nucleus accumbens (NAc) or ventral tegmental area (VTA) of adult mice. Two weeks after viral infection, animals received Meth or saline for five consecutive days. Locomotor behavior and striatal dopamine (DA) and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) level were determined. Repeated administration of Meth progressively increased locomotor activity; this sensitization reaction was attenuated by intra-NAc AAV-MOR microinjections. Infusion of AAV-MOR to VTA enhanced Meth sensitization. AAV-MOR significantly enhanced DA levels in VTA after VTA infection but reduced DOPAC/DA turnover in the NAc after NAc injection. Our data suggest a differential modulation of Meth sensitization by overexpression of MOR in NAc and VTA. Regional manipulation of MOR expression through AAV may be a novel approach to control Meth abuse and psychomimetic activity.

  15. Inhibition of opioid release in the rat spinal cord by α2C adrenergic receptors

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Wenling; Song, Bingbing; Marvizón, Juan Carlos G.

    2008-01-01

    Neurotransmitter receptors that control the release of opioid peptides in the spinal cord may play an important role in pain modulation. Norepinephrine, released by a descending pathway originating in the brainstem, is a powerful inducer of analgesia in the spinal cord. Adrenergic α2C receptors are present in opioid-containing terminals in the dorsal horn, where they could modulate opioid release. The goal of this study was to investigate this possibility. Opioid release was evoked from rat spinal cord slices by incubating them with the sodium channel opener veratridine in the presence of peptidase inhibitors (actinonin, captopril and thiorphan), and was measured in situ through the internalization of μ-opioid receptors in dorsal horn neurons. Veratridine produced internalization in 70% of these neurons. The α2 receptor agonists clonidine, guanfacine, medetomidine and UK-14304 inhibited the evoked μ-opioid receptor internalization with IC50s of 1.7 μM, 248 nM, 0.3 nM and 22 nM, respectively. However, inhibition by medetomidine was only partial, and inhibition by UK-14304 reversed itself at concentrations higher than 50 nM. None of these agonists inhibited μ-opioid receptor internalization produced by endomorphin-2, showing that they inhibited opioid release and not the internalization itself. The inhibition produced by clonidine, guanfacine or UK-14304 was completely reversed by the selective α2C antagonist JP-1203. In contrast, inhibition by guanfacine was not prevented by the α2A antagonist BRL-44408. These results show that α2C receptors inhibit the release of opioids in the dorsal horn. This action may serve to shut down the opioid system when the adrenergic system is active. PMID:18343461

  16. Nicotinic and opioid receptor regulation of striatal dopamine D2-receptor mediated transmission

    PubMed Central

    Mamaligas, Aphroditi A.; Cai, Yuan; Ford, Christopher P.

    2016-01-01

    In addition to dopamine neuron firing, cholinergic interneurons (ChIs) regulate dopamine release in the striatum via presynaptic nicotinic receptors (nAChRs) on dopamine axon terminals. Synchronous activity of ChIs is necessary to evoke dopamine release through this pathway. The frequency-dependence of disynaptic nicotinic modulation has led to the hypothesis that nAChRs act as a high-pass filter in the dopaminergic microcircuit. Here, we used optogenetics to selectively stimulate either ChIs or dopamine terminals directly in the striatum. To measure the functional consequence of dopamine release, D2-receptor synaptic activity was assessed via virally overexpressed potassium channels (GIRK2) in medium spiny neurons (MSNs). We found that nicotinic-mediated dopamine release was blunted at higher frequencies because nAChRs exhibit prolonged desensitization after a single pulse of synchronous ChI activity. However, when dopamine neurons alone were stimulated, nAChRs had no effect at any frequency. We further assessed how opioid receptors modulate these two mechanisms of release. Bath application of the κ opioid receptor agonist U69593 decreased D2-receptor activation through both pathways, whereas the μ opioid receptor agonist DAMGO decreased D2-receptor activity only as a result of cholinergic-mediated dopamine release. Thus the release of dopamine can be independently modulated when driven by either dopamine neurons or cholinergic interneurons. PMID:27886263

  17. T394A Mutation at the μ Opioid Receptor Blocks Opioid Tolerance and Increases Vulnerability to Heroin Self-Administration in Mice.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Fei; Barbier, Elisabeth; Chiu, Yi-Ting; He, Yi; Zhan, Jia; Bi, Guo-Hua; Zhang, Hai-Ying; Feng, Bo; Liu-Chen, Lee-Yuan; Wang, Jia Bei; Xi, Zheng-Xiong

    2016-10-05

    The etiology and pathophysiology underlying opioid tolerance and dependence are still unknown. Because mu opioid receptor (MOR) plays an essential role in opioid action, many vulnerability-related studies have focused on single nucleotide polymorphisms of MOR, particularly on A118G. In this study, we found that a single-point mutation at the MOR T394 phosphorylation site could be another important susceptive factor in the development of opioid tolerance and dependence in mice. T394A mutation, in which a threonine at 394 was replaced by an alanine, did not alter agonist binding to MOR and opioid analgesia, but resulted in loss of etorphine-induced MOR internalization in spinal dorsal horn neurons and opioid analgesic tolerance induced by either morphine or etorphine. In addition, this mutation also caused an increase in intravenous heroin self-administration and in nucleus accumbens dopamine response to heroin. These findings suggest that T394 phosphorylation following MOR activation causes MOR internalization and desensitization, which subsequently contributes to the development of tolerance in both opioid analgesia and opioid reward. Accordingly, T394A mutation blocks opioid tolerance and leads to an increase in brain dopamine response to opioids and in opioid-taking behavior. Thus, the T394 may serve as a new drug target for modulating opioid tolerance and the development of opioid abuse and addiction.

  18. BU74, a complex oripavine derivative with potent kappa opioid receptor agonism and delayed opioid antagonism.

    PubMed

    Husbands, Stephen M; Neilan, Claire L; Broadbear, Jillian; Grundt, Peter; Breeden, Simon; Aceto, Mario D; Woods, James H; Lewis, John W; Traynor, John R

    2005-02-21

    In the search for opioid agonists with delayed antagonist actions as potential treatments for substance abuse, the bridged morphinan BU74 (17-cyclopropylmethyl-3-hydroxy-[5beta,7beta,3',5']-pyrrolidino-2'[S]-phenyl-7alpha-methyl-6,14-endoetheno morphinan) (3f) was synthesized. In isolated tissue and [35S]GTPgammaS opioid receptor functional assays BU74 was shown to be a potent long-lasting kappa opioid receptor agonist, delta opioid receptor partial agonist and mu opioid receptor antagonist. In antinociceptive tests in the mouse, BU74 showed high efficacy and potent kappa opioid receptor agonism. When its agonist action had waned BU74 became an antagonist of kappa and mu opioid receptor agonists in the tail flick assay and of delta, kappa and mu opioid receptor agonists in the acetic acid writhing assay. The slow onset, long-duration kappa opioid receptor agonist effects of BU74 suggests that it could be a lead compound for the discovery of a treatment for cocaine abuse.

  19. Naloxone fails to produce conditioned place aversion in mu-opioid receptor knock-out mice.

    PubMed

    Skoubis, P D; Matthes, H W; Walwyn, W M; Kieffer, B L; Maidment, N T

    2001-01-01

    There is growing evidence that tonic activity of the opioid system may be important in the modulation of affective state. Naloxone produces a conditioned place aversion in rodents, an effect that is centrally mediated. Previous pharmacological data using antagonists with preferential actions at mu-, delta-, and kappa-opioid receptors indicate the importance of the mu-opioid receptor in mediating this effect. We sought to test the mu-opioid receptor selectivity of naloxone aversion using mu-opioid receptor knock-out mice. mu-Opioid receptor knock-out and wild-type mice were tested for naloxone (10 mg/kg, s.c.) aversion using a place conditioning paradigm. As a positive control for associative learning, knock-out mice were tested for conditioned place aversion to a kappa agonist, U50,488H (2 mg/kg, s.c.). Naloxone produced a significant place aversion in wild-type mice, but failed to have any effect in mu-opioid receptor knock-out mice. On the other hand, both knock-out and wild-type mice treated with U50,488H spent significantly less time in the drug-paired chamber compared to their respective vehicle controls. We conclude that the mu-opioid receptor is crucial for the acquisition of naloxone-induced conditioned place aversion. Furthermore, in a separate experiment using C57BL/6 mice, the delta-selective antagonist naltrindole (10 or 30 mg/kg, s.c.) failed to produce conditioned place aversion.Taken together, these data further support the notion that naloxone produces aversion by antagonizing tonic opioid activity at the mu-opioid receptor.

  20. Activation of Mas oncogene-related gene (Mrg) C receptors enhances morphine-induced analgesia through modulation of coupling of μ-opioid receptor to Gi-protein in rat spinal dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Wang, D; Chen, T; Zhou, X; Couture, R; Hong, Y

    2013-12-03

    Mas oncogene-related gene (Mrg) G protein-coupled receptors are exclusively expressed in small-sized neurons in trigeminal and dorsal root ganglia (DRG) in mammals. The present study investigated the effect of MrgC receptor activation on morphine analgesic potency and addressed its possible mechanisms. Intrathecal (i.t.) administration of the specific MrgC receptor agonist bovine adrenal medulla 8-22 (BAM8-22, 3 nmol) increased morphine-induced analgesia and shifted the morphine dose-response curve to the left in rats. Acute morphine (5 μg) reduced the coupling of μ-opioid receptors (MORs) to Gi-, but not Gs-, protein in the spinal dorsal horn. The i.t. BAM8-22 (3 nmol) prevented this change of G-protein repertoire while the inactive MrgC receptor agonist BAM8-18 (3 nmol, i.t.) failed to do so. A double labeling study showed the co-localization of MrgC and MORs in DRG neurons. The i.t. BAM8-22 also increased the coupling of MORs to Gi-protein and recruited Gi-protein from cytoplasm to the cell membrane in the spinal dorsal horn. Application of BAM8-22 (10nM) in the cultured ganglion explants for 30 min increased Gi-protein mRNA, but not Gs-protein mRNA. The present study demonstrated that acute administration of morphine inhibited the repertoire of MOR/Gi-protein coupling in the spinal dorsal horn in vivo. The findings highlight a novel mechanism by which the activation of MrgC receptors can modulate the coupling of MORs with Gi-protein to enhance morphine-induced analgesia. Hence, adjunct treatment of MrgC agonist BAM8-22 may be of therapeutic value to relieve pain. Copyright © 2013 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Discovery of Novel Triazole-Based Opioid Receptor Antagonists

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qiang; Keenan, Susan M.; Peng, Youyi; Nair, Anil C.; Yu, Seong Jae; Howells, Richard D.; Welsh, William J.

    2009-01-01

    We report the computer-aided design, chemical synthesis, and biological evaluation of a novel family of δ opioid receptor (DOR) antagonists containing a 1,2,4-triazole core structure that are structurally distinct from other known opioid receptor active ligands. Among those δ antagonists sharing this core structure, 8 exhibited strong binding affinity (Ki = 50 nM) for the DOR and appreciable selectivity for δ over μ and opioid receptors (δ/μ = 80; δ/κ > 200). PMID:16821764

  2. Activation of delta-opioid receptors reduces excitatory input to putative gustatory cells within the nucleus of the solitary tract.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Mingyan; Cho, Young K; Li, Cheng-Shu

    2009-01-01

    The rostral nucleus of the solitary tract (NST) is the first central relay in the gustatory pathway and plays a key role in processing and modulation of gustatory information. Here, we investigated the effects of opioid receptor agonists and antagonists on synaptic responses of the gustatory parabrachial nuclei (PbN)-projecting neurons in the rostral NST to electrical stimulation of the solitary tract (ST) using whole cell recordings in the hamster brain stem slices. ST-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were significantly reduced by met-enkephalin (MetE) in a concentration-dependent fashion and this effect was eliminated by naltrexone hydrochloride, a nonselective opioid receptor antagonist. Bath application of naltrindole hydrochloride, a selective delta-opioid receptor antagonist, eliminated MetE-induced reduction of EPSCs, whereas CTOP, a selective mu-opioid receptor antagonist had no effect, indicating that delta-opioid receptors are involved in the reduction of ST-evoked EPSCs induced by MetE. SNC80, a selective delta-opioid receptor agonist, mimicked the effect of MetE. The SNC80-induced reduction of ST-evoked EPSCs was eliminated by 7-benzylidenenaltrexone, a selective delta1-opioid receptor antagonist but not by naltriben mesylate, a selective delta2-opioid receptor antagonist, indicating that delta1-opioid receptors mediate the reduction of ST-evoked EPSCs induced by SNC80. Single-cell reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction analysis revealed the presence of delta1-opioid receptor mRNA in cells that responded to SNC80 with a reduction in ST-evoked EPSCs. Moreover, Western blot analysis demonstrated the presence of 40-kDa delta-opioid receptor proteins in the rostral NST tissue. These results suggest that postsynaptic delta1-opioid receptors are involved in opioid-induced reduction of ST-evoked EPSCs of PbN-projecting rostral NST cells.

  3. Mindfulness Meditation Modulates Pain Through Endogenous Opioids.

    PubMed

    Sharon, Haggai; Maron-Katz, Adi; Ben Simon, Eti; Flusser, Yuval; Hendler, Talma; Tarrasch, Ricardo; Brill, Silviu

    2016-07-01

    Recent evidence supports the beneficial effects of mindfulness meditation on pain. However, the neural mechanisms underlying this effect remain poorly understood. We used an opioid blocker to examine whether mindfulness meditation-induced analgesia involves endogenous opioids. Fifteen healthy experienced mindfulness meditation practitioners participated in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Participants rated the pain and unpleasantness of a cold stimulus prior to and after a mindfulness meditation session. Participants were then randomized to receive either intravenous naloxone or saline, after which they meditated again, and rated the same stimulus. A (3) × (2) repeated-measurements analysis of variance revealed a significant time effect for pain and unpleasantness scores (both P <.001) as well as a significant condition effect for pain and unpleasantness (both P <.2). Post hoc comparisons revealed that pain and unpleasantness scores were significantly reduced after natural mindfulness meditation and after placebo, but not after naloxone. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between the pain scores following naloxone vs placebo and participants' mindfulness meditation experience. These findings show, for the first time, that meditation involves endogenous opioid pathways, mediating its analgesic effect and growing resilient with increasing practice to external suggestion. This finding could hold promising therapeutic implications and further elucidate the fine mechanisms involved in human pain modulation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The mu-opioid receptor gene-dose dependent reductions in G-protein activation in the pons/medulla and antinociception induced by endomorphins in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Mizoguchi, H; Narita, M; Oji, D E; Suganuma, C; Nagase, H; Sora, I; Uhl, G R; Cheng, E Y; Tseng, L F

    1999-01-01

    There appear to be different relationships between mu-opioid receptor densities and the acute and neuroadaptive mu-opioid agonist-induced responses of the multiple opioid neuronal systems, including important pons/medulla circuits. The recent success in creating mu-opioid receptor knockout mice allows studies of mu-opioid agonist-induced pharmacological and physiological effects in animals that express no, one or two copies of the mu-opioid receptor gene. We now report that the binding of mu-opioid receptor ligand, [3H][D-Ala2,NHPhe4,Gly-ol]enkephalin to membrane preparations of the pons/medulla was reduced by half in heterozygous mu-opioid receptor knockout mice and eliminated in homozygous mu-opioid receptor knockout mice. The endogenous mu-opioid agonist peptides endomorphin-1 and -2 activate G-proteins in the pons/medulla from wild-type mice in a concentration-dependent fashion, as assessed using [35S]guanosine-5'-o-(3-thio)triphosphate binding. This stimulation was reduced to half of the wild-type levels in heterozygous mice and eliminated in homozygous knockout mice. The intracerebroventricular injection of either endomorphin-1 or endomorphin-2 produced marked antinociception in the hot-plate and tail-flick tests in wild-type mice. These antinociceptive actions were significantly reduced in heterozygous mu-opioid receptor knockout mice, and virtually abolished in homozygous knockout mice. The mu-opioid receptors are the principal molecular targets for endomorphin-induced G-protein activation in the pons/medulla and the antinociception caused by the intracerebroventricular administration of mu-opioid agonists. These data support the notion that there are limited physiological mu-opioid receptor reserves for inducing G-protein activation in the pons/medulla and for the nociceptive modulation induced by the central administration of endomorphin-1 and -2.

  5. Leukocyte opioid receptors mediate analgesia via Ca(2+)-regulated release of opioid peptides.

    PubMed

    Celik, Melih Ö; Labuz, Dominika; Henning, Karen; Busch-Dienstfertig, Melanie; Gaveriaux-Ruff, Claire; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Zimmer, Andreas; Machelska, Halina

    2016-10-01

    Opioids are the most powerful analgesics. As pain is driven by sensory transmission and opioid receptors couple to inhibitory G proteins, according to the classical concept, opioids alleviate pain by activating receptors on neurons and blocking the release of excitatory mediators (e.g., substance P). Here we show that analgesia can be mediated by opioid receptors in immune cells. We propose that activation of leukocyte opioid receptors leads to the secretion of opioid peptides Met-enkephalin, β-endorphin and dynorphin A (1-17), which subsequently act at local neuronal receptors, to relieve pain. In a mouse model of neuropathic pain induced by a chronic constriction injury of the sciatic nerve, exogenous agonists of δ-, μ- and κ-opioid receptors injected at the damaged nerve infiltrated by opioid peptide- and receptor-expressing leukocytes, produced analgesia, as assessed with von Frey filaments. The analgesia was attenuated by pharmacological or genetic inactivation of opioid peptides, and by leukocyte depletion. This decrease in analgesia was restored by the transfer of wild-type, but not opioid receptor-lacking leukocytes. Ex vivo, exogenous opioids triggered secretion of opioid peptides from wild-type immune cells isolated from damaged nerves, which was diminished by blockade of Gαi/o or Gβγ (but not Gαs) proteins, by chelator of intracellular (but not extracellular) Ca(2+), by blockers of phospholipase C (PLC) and inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptors, and was partially attenuated by protein kinase C inhibitor. Similarly, the leukocyte depletion-induced decrease in exogenous opioid analgesia was re-established by transfer of immune cells ex vivo pretreated with extracellular Ca(2+) chelator, but was unaltered by leukocytes pretreated with intracellular Ca(2+) chelator or blockers of Gαi/o and Gβγ proteins. Thus, both ex vivo opioid peptide release and in vivo analgesia were mediated by leukocyte opioid receptors coupled to the G

  6. Methylnaltrexone, a novel peripheral opioid receptor antagonist for the treatment of opioid side effects.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Chun-Su; Israel, Robert J

    2006-05-01

    Methylnaltrexone is an investigational peripheral opioid receptor antagonist, a quaternary derivative of naltrexone. Methylnaltrexone has greater polarity and lower lipid solubility, thus it does not cross the blood-brain barrier in humans. Methylnaltrexone offers the therapeutic potential to block or reverse the undesired side effects of opioids that are mediated by receptors located in the periphery (e.g., in the gastrointestinal tract), without affecting analgesia or precipitating the opioid withdrawal symptoms that are predominantly mediated by receptors in the CNS. This article reviews preclinical studies and clinical opioid bowel dysfunction trial data, and briefly discusses other potential roles of this compound in clinical practice.

  7. Effects of kappa-opioid receptor activation on myocardium.

    PubMed

    Pyle, W G; Lester, J W; Hofmann, P A

    2001-08-01

    kappa-opioid receptor-PKC pathway is a modulator of myocardial energy status through reduction of actomyosin ATP consumption.

  8. Salvinorin A: allosteric interactions at the mu-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Rothman, Richard B; Murphy, Daniel L; Xu, Heng; Godin, Jonathan A; Dersch, Christina M; Partilla, John S; Tidgewell, Kevin; Schmidt, Matthew; Prisinzano, Thomas E

    2007-02-01

    Salvinorin A [(2S,4aR,6aR,7R,9S,10aS,10bR)-9-(acetyloxy)-2-(3-furanyl)-dodecahydro-6a,10b-dimethyl-4,10-dioxo-2h-naphtho[2,1-c]pyran-7-carboxylic acid methyl ester] is a hallucinogenic kappa-opioid receptor agonist that lacks the usual basic nitrogen atom present in other known opioid ligands. Our first published studies indicated that Salvinorin A weakly inhibited mu-receptor binding, and subsequent experiments revealed that Salvinorin A partially inhibited mu-receptor binding. Therefore, we hypothesized that Salvinorin A allosterically modulates mu-receptor binding. To test this hypothesis, we used Chinese hamster ovary cells expressing the cloned human opioid receptor. Salvinorin A partially inhibited [(3)H]Tyr-D-Ala-Gly-N-Me-Phe-Gly-ol (DAMGO) (0.5, 2.0, and 8.0 nM) binding with E(MAX) values of 78.6, 72.1, and 45.7%, respectively, and EC(50) values of 955, 1124, and 4527 nM, respectively. Salvinorin A also partially inhibited [(3)H]diprenorphine (0.02, 0.1, and 0.5 nM) binding with E(MAX) values of 86.2, 64, and 33.6%, respectively, and EC(50) values of 1231, 866, and 3078 nM, respectively. Saturation binding studies with [(3)H]DAMGO showed that Salvinorin A (10 and 30 microM) decreased the mu-receptor B(max) and increased the K(d) in a dose-dependent nonlinear manner. Saturation binding studies with [(3)H]diprenorphine showed that Salvinorin A (10 and 40 microM) decreased the mu-receptor B(max) and increased the K(d) in a dose-dependent nonlinear manner. Similar findings were observed in rat brain with [(3)H]DAMGO. Kinetic experiments demonstrated that Salvinorin A altered the dissociation kinetics of both [(3)H]DAMGO and [(3)H]diprenorphine binding to mu receptors. Furthermore, Salvinorin A acted as an uncompetitive inhibitor of DAMGO-stimulated guanosine 5'-O-(3-[(35)S]thio)-triphosphate binding. Viewed collectively, these data support the hypothesis that Salvinorin A allosterically modulates the mu-opioid receptor.

  9. The mu opioid receptor: A new target for cancer therapy?

    PubMed

    Singleton, Patrick A; Moss, Jonathan; Karp, Daniel D; Atkins, Johnique T; Janku, Filip

    2015-08-15

    Mu opioids are among the most widely used drugs for patients with cancer with both acute and chronic pain as well as in the perioperative period. Several retrospective studies have suggested that opioid use might promote tumor progression and as a result negatively impact survival in patients with advanced cancer; however, in the absence of appropriate prospective validation, any changes in recommendations for opioid use are not warranted. In this review, the authors present preclinical and clinical data that support their hypothesis that the mu opioid receptor is a potential target for cancer therapy because of its plausible role in tumor progression. The authors also propose the hypothesis that peripheral opioid antagonists such as methylnaltrexone, which reverses the peripheral effects of mu opioids but maintains centrally mediated analgesia and is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of opioid-induced constipation, can be used to target the mu opioid receptor. © 2015 American Cancer Society.

  10. [Opioid receptors of the CNS: function, structure and distribution].

    PubMed

    Slamberová, R

    2004-01-01

    Even though the alkaloids of opium, such as morphine and codeine, were isolated at the beginning of 19th century, the opioid receptors were not determined until 1970's. The discovery of endogenous opioid peptides, such as endorphins, enkephalins and dynorphins, has helped to differentiate between the specific opioid receptor subtypes, mu, delta and kappa, that are used up to now. Opioid receptors are distributed in the central nervous system unevenly. Each receptor subtype has its own specific and nonspecific agonists and antagonists. Opioides, as exogenous opioid receptor agonists, are drugs that are often used in medicine for their analgesic effects, but they are also some of the most heavily abused drugs in the world. Opioides may also induce long-term changes in the numbers and binding activities of opioid receptors. Some of our studies in fact demonstrate that prenatal morphine exposure can alter opioid receptors of adult rats. This may begin to provide insight into the sources of some of the morphological and behavioral changes in the progeny of mothers that received or abused opioides during pregnancy.

  11. Recent developments in the study of opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Cox, Brian M

    2013-04-01

    It is now about 40 years since Avram Goldstein proposed the use of the stereoselectivity of opioid receptors to identify these receptors in neural membranes. In 2012, the crystal structures of the four members of the opioid receptor family were reported, providing a structural basis for understanding of critical features affecting the actions of opiate drugs. This minireview summarizes these recent developments in our understanding of opiate receptors. Receptor function is also influenced by amino acid substitutions in the protein sequence. Among opioid receptor genes, one polymorphism is much more frequent in human populations than the many others that have been found, but the functional significance of this single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) has been unclear. Recent studies have shed new light on how this SNP might influence opioid receptor function. In this minireview, the functional significance of the most prevalent genetic polymorphism among the opioid receptor genes is also considered.

  12. Nucleus accumbens dopamine and mu-opioid receptors modulate the reinstatement of food-seeking behavior by food-associated cues.

    PubMed

    Guy, Elizabeth G; Choi, Eugene; Pratt, Wayne E

    2011-06-01

    The high attrition rates for dietary interventions aimed at promoting a healthier body mass may be caused, at least in part, by constant exposure to environmental stimuli that are associated with palatable foods. In both humans and animals, conditioned stimuli (CSs) that signal reward availability reliably reinstate food- and drug-seeking behaviors. The nucleus accumbens (NAcc) is critically involved in the cue-evoked reinstatement of food-seeking, but the role of individual neurotransmitter systems within the NAcc remains to be determined. These experiments tested the effects of intra-accumbal pharmacological manipulations of dopamine (DA) D(1) and D(2) receptors, mu-opioid receptors, or serotonin (5-HT) receptors on cue-evoked relapse to food-seeking. Rats were trained to lever press for sucrose pellets and the concurrent presentation of a light-tone CS. Once training was complete, lever-pressing was extinguished in the absence of either sucrose or CS presentation. Once each rat had reached extinction criterion, they received two reinstatement sessions in which lever pressing was renewed by response-contingent presentation of the CS. Prior to each reinstatement test, rats received NAcc microinfusions of saline or the selective D(1) receptor antagonist SCH 23390, the D(2) receptor antagonist raclopride, the mu-opioid receptor agonist [D-Ala2, N-MePhe4, Gly-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO), or 5-HT hydrogen maleate. Compared to saline test days, intra-accumbens infusions of SCH 23390 (1 μg/0.5 μL), raclopride (1 μg/0.5 μL), or DAMGO (0.25 μg/0.5 μL) effectively blocked the cue-evoked reinstatement of food-seeking. In contrast, stimulation of serotonin (5-HT) receptors by 5-HT hydrogen maleate (5 μg/0.5 μL) had no effect on cue-induced reinstatement. These novel data support roles for NAcc DA D(1), D(2), and mu-opioid receptors in the cue-evoked reinstatement of food seeking.

  13. INTERACTION BETWEEN DELTA OPIOID RECEPTORS AND BENZODIAZEPINES IN CO2- INDUCED RESPIRATORY RESPONSES IN MICE

    PubMed Central

    Borkowski, Anne H.; Barnes, Dylan C.; Blanchette, Derek R.; Castellanos, F. Xavier; Klein, Donald F.; Wilson, Donald A.

    2011-01-01

    The false-suffocation hypothesis of panic disorder (Klein, 1993) suggested δ-opioid receptors as a possible source of the respiratory dysfunction manifested in panic attacks occurring in panic disorder (Preter and Klein, 2008). This study sought to determine if a lack of δ-opioid receptors in a mouse model affects respiratory response to elevated CO2, and whether the response is modulated by benzodiazepines, which are widely used to treat panic disorder. In a whole-body plethysmograph, respiratory responses to 5% CO2 were compared between δ-opioid receptor knockout mice and wild-type mice after saline, diazepam (1 mg/kg), and alprazolam (0.3 mg/kg) injection. The results show that lack of δ-opioid receptors does not affect normal response to elevated CO2, but does prevent benzodiazepines from modulating that response. Thus, in the presence of benzodiazepine agonists, respiratory responses to elevated CO2 were enhanced in δ-opioid receptor knockout mice compared to wild-type mice. This suggests an interplay between benzodiazepine receptors and δ-opioid receptors in regulating the respiratory effects of elevated CO2, which might be related to CO2 induced panic. PMID:21561601

  14. Agonist Binding and Desensitization of the μ-Opioid Receptor Is Modulated by Phosphorylation of the C-Terminal Tail Domain

    PubMed Central

    Arttamangkul, Seksiri; Bunzow, James R.; Williams, John T.

    2015-01-01

    Sustained activation of G protein–coupled receptors can lead to a rapid decline in signaling through acute receptor desensitization. In the case of the μ-opioid receptor (MOPr), this desensitization may play a role in the development of analgesic tolerance. It is understood that phosphorylation of MOPr promotes association with β-arrestin proteins, which then facilitates desensitization and receptor internalization. Agonists that induce acute desensitization have been shown to induce a noncanonical high-affinity agonist binding state in MOPr, conferring a persistent memory of prior receptor activation. In the current study, live-cell confocal imaging was used to investigate the role of receptor phosphorylation in agonist binding to MOPr. A phosphorylation cluster in the C-terminal tail of MOPr was identified as a mediator of agonist-induced affinity changes in MOPr. This site is unique from the primary phosphorylation cluster responsible for β-arrestin binding and internalization. Electrophysiologic measurements of receptor function suggest that both phosphorylation clusters may play a parallel role during acute receptor desensitization. Desensitization was unaffected by alanine mutation of either phosphorylation cluster, but was largely eliminated when both clusters were mutated. Overall, this work suggests that there are multiple effects of MOPr phosphorylation that appear to regulate MOPr function: one affecting β-arrestin binding and a second affecting agonist binding. PMID:25934731

  15. Morphine inhibits an alpha9-acetylcholine nicotinic receptor-mediated response by a mechanism which does not involve opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Lioudyno, M I; Verbitsky, M; Holt, J C; Elgoyhen, A B; Guth, P S

    2000-11-01

    Nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors are known to be targets for modulation by a number of substances, including the opiates. It is known that acetylcholine (ACh) coexists with opioid peptides in cochlear efferent neurons, and such a colocalization has been proposed for the vestibular system. In the present study we test the hypothesis that morphine, an opioid receptor agonist with a broad spectrum of selectivity, modulates alpha9nACh receptor-mediated responses in frog vestibular hair cells. Morphine dose-dependently and reversibly inhibited ACh-induced currents as recorded by the perforated patch-clamp method. In the presence of morphine the ACh dose-response curve was shifted to the right in a parallel fashion, suggesting a competitive interaction. However, naloxone did not antagonize the inhibition produced by morphine. To test the hypothesis that morphine could interact with the alpha9nACh receptor without the involvement of opioid receptors, experiments were performed using Xenopus laevis oocytes injected with the alpha9nACh receptor cRNA. The currents activated by ACh in Xenopus oocytes, a system that lacks opioid receptors, were also dose-dependently inhibited by morphine. We conclude that morphine inhibits the alpha9nACh receptor-mediated response in hair cells and Xenopus oocytes through a mechanism which does not involve opioid receptors but may be a direct block of the alpha9nACh receptor.

  16. Targeting multiple opioid receptors - improved analgesics with reduced side effects?

    PubMed

    Günther, Thomas; Dasgupta, Pooja; Mann, Anika; Miess, Elke; Kliewer, Andrea; Fritzwanker, Sebastian; Steinborn, Ralph; Schulz, Stefan

    2017-04-05

    Classical opioid analgesics, including morphine, mediate all of their desired and undesired effects by specific activation of the μ-opioid receptorreceptor). The use of morphine for treating chronic pain, however, is limited by the development of constipation, respiratory depression, tolerance and dependence. Analgesic effects can also be mediated through other members of the opioid receptor family such as the κ-opioid receptorreceptor), δ-opioid receptorreceptor) and the nociceptin/orphanin FQ peptide receptor (NOP receptor). Currently, a new generation of opioid analgesics is being developed that can simultaneously bind with high affinity to multiple opioid receptors. With this new action profile, it is hoped that additional analgesic effects and fewer side effects can be achieved. Recent research is mainly focused on the development of bifunctional μ/NOP receptor agonists, which has already led to novel lead structures such as the spiroindole-based cebranopadol and a compound class with a piperidin-4-yl-1,3-dihydroindol-2-one backbone (SR16835/AT-202 and SR14150/AT-200). In addition, the ornivol BU08028 is an analogue of the clinically well-established buprenorphine. Moreover, the morphinan-based nalfurafine exerts its effect with a dominant κ receptor-component and is therefore utilized in the treatment of pruritus. The very potent dihydroetorphine is a true multi-receptor opioid ligand in that it binds to μ, κ and δ receptor. The main focus of this review is to assess the paradigm of opioid ligands targeting multiple receptors with a single chemical entity. We reflect on this rationale by discussing the biological actions of selected multi-opioid receptor ligands, but not on their medicinal chemistry and design.

  17. Label-free integrative pharmacology on-target of opioid ligands at the opioid receptor family

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In vitro pharmacology of ligands is typically assessed using a variety of molecular assays based on predetermined molecular events in living cells. Many ligands including opioid ligands pose the ability to bind more than one receptor, and can also provide distinct operational bias to activate a specific receptor. Generating an integrative overview of the binding and functional selectivity of ligands for a receptor family is a critical but difficult step in drug discovery and development. Here we applied a newly developed label-free integrative pharmacology on-target (iPOT) approach to systematically survey the selectivity of a library of fifty-five opioid ligands against the opioid receptor family. All ligands were interrogated using dynamic mass redistribution (DMR) assays in both recombinant and native cell lines that express specific opioid receptor(s). The cells were modified with a set of probe molecules to manifest the binding and functional selectivity of ligands. DMR profiles were collected and translated to numerical coordinates that was subject to similarity analysis. A specific set of opioid ligands were then selected for quantitative pharmacology determination. Results Results showed that among fifty-five opioid ligands examined most ligands displayed agonist activity in at least one opioid receptor expressing cell line under different conditions. Further, many ligands exhibited pathway biased agonism. Conclusion We demonstrate that the iPOT effectively sorts the ligands into distinct clusters based on their binding and functional selectivity at the opioid receptor family. PMID:23497702

  18. Neurokinin 1 and opioid receptors: relationships and interactions in nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Jie; Zeng, Si; Wang, Xiangrui; Babazada, Hasan; Li, Zhanchun; Liu, Renyu; Yu, Weifeng

    2017-01-01

    Opioid receptors and neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1R) are found highly expressed in the central nervous system. The co-localization of these two kinds of receptors suggests that they might interact with each other in both the transmission and modulation of the pain signal. In this review, we explore the relationships between opioid receptors and NK1R. Substance P (SP) plays a modulatory role in the pain transmission by activating the NK1R. Opioid receptor activation can inhibit SP release. NK1R is found participating in the mechanisms of the side effects of the opioids, including opioid analgesic tolerance, hyperalgesia, anxiety behaviors of morphine reward and opioids related respiratory depression. A series of compounds such as NK1R antagonists and ligands works on both mu/delta opioid receptor (MOR/DOR) and NK1R were synthesized as novel analgesics that enhance the clinical pain management efficacy and reduce the dosage and side effects. The current status of these novel ligands and the limitations are discussed in this review. Although the working mechanisms of these ligands remained unclear, they could be used as research tool for developing novel analgesic drugs in the future.

  19. Semisynthetic Neoclerodanes as Kappa Opioid Receptor Probes

    PubMed Central

    Lovell, Kimberly M.; Vasiljevik, Tamara; Araya, Juan J.; Lozama, Anthony; Prevatt-Smith, Katherine M.; Day, Victor W.; Dersch, Christina M.; Rothman, Richard B.; Butelman, Eduardo R.; Kreek, Mary Jeanne; Prisinzano, Thomas E.

    2012-01-01

    Modification of the furan ring of salvinorin A (1), the main active component of Salvia divinorum, has resulted in novel neoclerodane diterpenes with opioid receptor affinity and activity. Conversion of the furan ring to an aldehyde at the C-12 position (5) has allowed for the synthesis of analogues with new carbon-carbon bonds at that position. Previous methods for forming these bonds, such as Grignard and Stille conditions, have met with limited success. We report a palladium catalyzed Liebeskind-Srogl cross-coupling reaction of a thioester and a boronic acid that occurs at neutral pH and ambient temperature to produce ketone analogs at C-12. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first reported usage of the Liebeskind-Srogl reaction to diversify a natural product scaffold. We also describe a one-step protocol for the conversion of 1 to 12-epi-1 (3) through microwave irradiation. Previously, this synthetically challenging process has required multiple steps. Additionally, we report in this study that alkene 9 and aromatic analogues 12, 19, 23, 25, and 26 were discovered to retain affinity and selectivity at kappa opioid receptors (KOP). Finally, we report that the furan-2-yl analog of 1 (31) has similar affinity to 1. Collectively, these findings suggest that different aromatic groups appended directly to the decalin core may be well tolerated by KOP receptors, and may generate further ligands with affinity and activity at KOP receptors. PMID:22464684

  20. Delta opioid receptors presynaptically regulate cutaneous mechanosensory neuron input to the spinal cord dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Bardoni, Rita; Tawfik, Vivianne L; Wang, Dong; François, Amaury; Solorzano, Carlos; Shuster, Scott A; Choudhury, Papiya; Betelli, Chiara; Cassidy, Colleen; Smith, Kristen; de Nooij, Joriene C; Mennicken, Françoise; O'Donnell, Dajan; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Woodbury, C Jeffrey; Basbaum, Allan I; MacDermott, Amy B; Scherrer, Grégory

    2014-03-19

    Cutaneous mechanosensory neurons detect mechanical stimuli that generate touch and pain sensation. Although opioids are generally associated only with the control of pain, here we report that the opioid system in fact broadly regulates cutaneous mechanosensation, including touch. This function is predominantly subserved by the delta opioid receptor (DOR), which is expressed by myelinated mechanoreceptors that form Meissner corpuscles, Merkel cell-neurite complexes, and circumferential hair follicle endings. These afferents also include a small population of CGRP-expressing myelinated nociceptors that we now identify as the somatosensory neurons that coexpress mu and delta opioid receptors. We further demonstrate that DOR activation at the central terminals of myelinated mechanoreceptors depresses synaptic input to the spinal dorsal horn, via the inhibition of voltage-gated calcium channels. Collectively our results uncover a molecular mechanism by which opioids modulate cutaneous mechanosensation and provide a rationale for targeting DOR to alleviate injury-induced mechanical hypersensitivity.

  1. Revolution in GPCR signalling: opioid receptor heteromers as novel therapeutic targets: IUPHAR review 10.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Wakako; Gomes, Ivone; Devi, Lakshmi A

    2014-09-01

    GPCRs can interact with each other to form homomers or heteromers. Homomers involve interactions with the same receptor type while heteromers involve interactions between two different GPCRs. These receptor-receptor interactions modulate not only the binding but also the signalling and trafficking properties of individual receptors. Opioid receptor heteromerization has been extensively investigated with the objective of identifying novel therapeutic targets that are as potent as morphine but without the side effects associated with chronic morphine use. In this context, studies have described heteromerization between the different types of opioid receptors and between opioid receptors and a wide range of GPCRs including adrenoceptors, cannabinoid, 5-HT, metabotropic glutamate and sensory neuron-specific receptors. Recent advances in the field involving the generation of heteromer-specific reagents (antibodies or ligands) or of membrane-permeable peptides that disrupt the heteromer interaction are helping to elucidate the physiological role of opioid receptor heteromers and the contribution of the partner receptor to the side effects associated with opioid use. For example, studies using membrane-permeable peptides targeting the heteromer interface have implicated μ and δ receptor heteromers in the development of tolerance to morphine, and heteromers of μ and gastrin-releasing peptide receptors in morphine-induced itch. In addition, a number of ligands that selectively target opioid receptor heteromers exhibit potent antinociception with a decrease in the side effects commonly associated with morphine use. In this review, we summarize the latest findings regarding the biological and functional characteristics of opioid receptor heteromers both in vitro and in vivo.

  2. Amygdalar opioids modulate hypothalamic melanocortin-induced anorexia

    PubMed Central

    Beckman, Tiffany R.; Shi, Qiuying; Levine, Allen S.; Billington, Charles J.

    2014-01-01

    We wanted to assess the possibility that opioid activity in the central amygdala (CeA) could modulate the feeding inhibition of melanocortin stimulation of the paraventricular hypothalamus (PVN). The melanocortin system is important in both the acute regulation of satiety and feeding behavior and in the integration of long-term appetite signals. Melanotan II (MTII) is a synthetic MC3R and MC4R agonist which reduces food intake when given intracerebroventricularly (ICV) and into the PVN. Tyr-D-Ala-Gly-(me) Phe-Gly-ol (DAMGO), a μ-opioid receptor agonist, increases food intake, while opioid antagonists, like naltrexone (NTX), inhibit food intake after injection into many brain sites involved in appetite regulation, including the CeA. In food-deprived male Sprague-Dawley rats, co-injected intra-PVN MTII partially blocked the orexigenic effect of co-injected intra-CeA DAMGO. Intra-CeA NTX co-injected with intra-PVN MTII reduced food intake significantly more than either alone. NTX administered intra-CeA reduced c-Fos-immunoreactivity (IR) in nucleus accumbens neurons significantly compared to the intra-PVN MTII treated animals, animals co-injected intra-PVN with MTII and intra-CeA with NTX animals, and control animal Intra-PVN MTII induced c-Fos-IR in significantly more PVN neurons than observed in control animals. Intra-CeA NTX co-injected with intra-PVN MTII induced c-Fos-IR significantly in PVN neurons relative to control and intra-CeA NTX animals. Such data support the significance of opioid action within the CeA as a modulator of the feeding regulation action of melanocortins within the PVN, occurring within the context of a larger appetitive network. PMID:19136019

  3. Pharmacological traits of delta opioid receptors: pitfalls or opportunities?

    PubMed Central

    van Rijn, Richard M.; DeFriel, Julia N.; Whistler, Jennifer L.

    2013-01-01

    Delta opioid receptors (DORs) have been considered as a potential target to relieve pain as well as treat depression and anxiety disorders, and are known to modulate other physiological responses, including ethanol and food consumption. A small number of DOR selective drugs are in clinical trials, but no DOR selective drugs have been approved by the Federal Drug Administration and some candidates have failed in phase II clinical trials, highlighting current difficulties producing effective delta opioid based therapies. Recent studies have provided new insights into the pharmacology of the DOR, which is often complex and at times paradoxical. This review will discuss the existing literature focusing on four aspects: 1) Two DOR subtypes have been postulated based on differences in pharmacological effects of existing DOR-selective ligands 2) DORs are expressed ubiquitously throughout the body and central nervous system and are, thus, positioned to play a role in a multitude of diseases. 3) DOR expression is often dynamic, with many reports of increased expression during exposure to chronic stimuli, such as stress, inflammation, neuropathy, morphine, or changes in endogenous opioid tone. 4) A large structural variety in DOR ligands implies potential different mechanisms of activating the receptor. These combined features of DOR pharmacology illustrate the potential benefit of designing tailored or biased DOR ligands. PMID:23649885

  4. Piperazinyl benzamidines: synthesis and affinity for the delta opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Nortey, S O; Baxter, E W; Codd, E E; Zhang, S P; Reitz, A B

    2001-07-09

    Piperazinyl benzamidines were prepared and found to bind to the rat delta (delta) opioid receptor. The most active compounds had a N,N-diethylcarboxamido group and a N-benzyl piperazine. The most potent among these was N,N-diethyl-4-[4-(phenylmethyl)-1-piperazinyl][2-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]iminomethyl]benzamide (27) with a 1.22nM K(i) for the rat delta opioid receptor and ca. 1000 x selectivity relative to the mu opioid subtype.

  5. Revolution in GPCR signalling: opioid receptor heteromers as novel therapeutic targets: IUPHAR Review 10

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Wakako; Gomes, Ivone; Devi, Lakshmi A

    2014-01-01

    GPCRs can interact with each other to form homomers or heteromers. Homomers involve interactions with the same receptor type while heteromers involve interactions between two different GPCRs. These receptor–receptor interactions modulate not only the binding but also the signalling and trafficking properties of individual receptors. Opioid receptor heteromerization has been extensively investigated with the objective of identifying novel therapeutic targets that are as potent as morphine but without the side effects associated with chronic morphine use. In this context, studies have described heteromerization between the different types of opioid receptors and between opioid receptors and a wide range of GPCRs including adrenoceptors, cannabinoid, 5-HT, metabotropic glutamate and sensory neuron-specific receptors. Recent advances in the field involving the generation of heteromer-specific reagents (antibodies or ligands) or of membrane-permeable peptides that disrupt the heteromer interaction are helping to elucidate the physiological role of opioid receptor heteromers and the contribution of the partner receptor to the side effects associated with opioid use. For example, studies using membrane-permeable peptides targeting the heteromer interface have implicated μ and δ receptor heteromers in the development of tolerance to morphine, and heteromers of μ and gastrin-releasing peptide receptors in morphine-induced itch. In addition, a number of ligands that selectively target opioid receptor heteromers exhibit potent antinociception with a decrease in the side effects commonly associated with morphine use. In this review, we summarize the latest findings regarding the biological and functional characteristics of opioid receptor heteromers both in vitro and in vivo. PMID:24916280

  6. The opioid receptors as targets for drug abuse medication.

    PubMed

    Noble, Florence; Lenoir, Magalie; Marie, Nicolas

    2015-08-01

    The endogenous opioid system is largely expressed in the brain, and both endogenous opioid peptides and receptors are present in areas associated with reward and motivation. It is well known that this endogenous system plays a key role in many aspects of addictive behaviours. The present review summarizes the modifications of the opioid system induced by chronic treatment with drugs of abuse reported in preclinical and clinical studies, as well as the action of opioid antagonists and agonists on the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse, with therapeutic perspectives. We have focused on the effects of chronic psychostimulants, alcohol and nicotine exposure. Taken together, the changes in both opioid peptides and opioid receptors in different brain structures following acute or chronic exposure to these drugs of abuse clearly identify the opioid system as a potential target for the development of effective pharmacotherapy for the treatment of addiction and the prevention of relapse.

  7. The opioid receptors as targets for drug abuse medication

    PubMed Central

    Noble, Florence; Lenoir, Magalie; Marie, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    The endogenous opioid system is largely expressed in the brain, and both endogenous opioid peptides and receptors are present in areas associated with reward and motivation. It is well known that this endogenous system plays a key role in many aspects of addictive behaviours. The present review summarizes the modifications of the opioid system induced by chronic treatment with drugs of abuse reported in preclinical and clinical studies, as well as the action of opioid antagonists and agonists on the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse, with therapeutic perspectives. We have focused on the effects of chronic psychostimulants, alcohol and nicotine exposure. Taken together, the changes in both opioid peptides and opioid receptors in different brain structures following acute or chronic exposure to these drugs of abuse clearly identify the opioid system as a potential target for the development of effective pharmacotherapy for the treatment of addiction and the prevention of relapse. PMID:25988826

  8. Constitutive opioid receptor activation: a prerequisite mechanism involved in acute opioid withdrawal.

    PubMed

    Freye, E; Levy, Jv

    2005-06-01

    The opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone, which is used in detoxification and rehabilitation programmes in opioid addicts, can precipitate opioid withdrawal symptoms even in patients who have no opioid present. We tested the hypothesis that in order to precipitate withdrawal, opioids need to convert the inactive opioid receptor site via protein kinase C into a constitutively active form on which the antagonist precipitates withdrawal. Acute microg/kg), given for 6 days, which was followed by the antagonist naltrexone (20 microg/kg i.v.) in the awake trained canine (n = 10). Abrupt displacement of opioid binding resulted in acute withdrawal symptoms: increase in blood pressure, heart rate, increase in amplitude height of somatosensory evoked potential, reduced tolerance to colon distention and a significant increase in grading of vegetative variables (restlessness, panting, thrashing of the head, whining, yawning, gnawing, salivation and/or rhinorrhoea, mydriasis, stepping of extremities and vomiting). Following a washout period of 14 days, the same animals were given the highly specific protein kinase C inhibitor H7 (250 microg/kg) prior to the same dosages of sufentanil and naltrexone. Such pretreatment was able to either attenuate or completely abolish the acute withdrawal symptoms. The data suggest that for precipitation of withdrawal, intracellular phosphorylation is a prerequisite in order to activate the opioid mu-receptor. In such a setting, naltrexone acts like an 'inverse agonist' relative to the action of the antagonist on a non-preoccupied receptor site not being exposed previously to a potent opioid agonist.

  9. [Morphofunctional manifestations of cardioprotective effect of mu-opioid receptor stimulation in stress].

    PubMed

    Maslov, L N; Revinskaia, Iu G; Ryzhov, A I; Naryzhnaia, N V

    2001-01-01

    Activation of peripheral mu-opioid receptors contributes to an increase in stability of cardiomyocytes to stress damage manifesting with decreased accumulation of Tc-99m pyrophosphate in the heart muscle and contractures of the myocardium. As a principal mechanism of mu-receptor-dependent increase in resistance of the heart to stress damage, modulated influence of opioids on adrenergic pathogenetic links of heart stress damage is considered. In realization of the discovered cardioprotective effect associated with mu-receptor activation, opioidergic limitation of histamine release from mast cells in the myocardium and also mu-receptor-dependent intensification of coronary bloodstream in stressed animals may play a definite role.

  10. Functional Selectivity at the μ-Opioid Receptor: Implications for Understanding Opioid Analgesia and Tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Raehal, Kirsten M.; Schmid, Cullen L.; Groer, Chad E.

    2011-01-01

    Opioids are the most effective analgesic drugs for the management of moderate or severe pain, yet their clinical use is often limited because of the onset of adverse side effects. Drugs in this class produce most of their physiological effects through activation of the μ opioid receptor; however, an increasing number of studies demonstrate that different opioids, while presumably acting at this single receptor, can activate distinct downstream responses, a phenomenon termed functional selectivity. Functional selectivity of receptor-mediated events can manifest as a function of the drug used, the cellular or neuronal environment examined, or the signaling or behavioral measure recorded. This review summarizes both in vitro and in vivo work demonstrating functional selectivity at the μ opioid receptor in terms of G protein coupling, receptor phosphorylation, interactions with β-arrestins, receptor desensitization, internalization and signaling, and details on how these differences may relate to the progression of analgesic tolerance after their extended use. PMID:21873412

  11. Influence of candidate polymorphisms on the dipeptidyl peptidase IV and μ-opioid receptor genes expression in aspect of the β-casomorphin-7 modulation functions in autism.

    PubMed

    Cieślińska, Anna; Sienkiewicz-Szłapka, Edyta; Wasilewska, Jolanta; Fiedorowicz, Ewa; Chwała, Barbara; Moszyńska-Dumara, Małgorzata; Cieśliński, Tomasz; Bukało, Marta; Kostyra, Elżbieta

    2015-03-01

    Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder with population prevalence of approximately 60-70 per 10,000. Data shows that both opioid system function enhancement and opiate administration can result in autistic-like symptoms. Cow milk opioid peptides, including β-casomorphin-7 (BCM7, Tyr-Pro-Phe-Pro-Gly-Pro-Ile), affect the μ-opioid receptor (MOR) and are subjected to degradation resulting from the proline dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPPIV, EC 3.4.14.5) enzyme activity. The presence of MOR and DPPIV activity are crucial factors determining biological activity of BCM7 in the human body. Our study examined the effect of β-casomorphin-7 on the MOR and DPPIV genes expression according to specific point mutations in these genes. In addition, we investigated frequency of A118G SNP in the MOR gene and rs7608798 of the DPPIV (A/G) gene in healthy and autistic children. Our research indicated correlation in DPPIV gene expression under the influence of BCM7 and hydrolyzed milk between healthy and ASD-affected children with genotype GG (P<0.0001). We also observed increased MOR gene expression in healthy children with genotype AG at polymorphic site A118G under influence of BCM7 and hydrolyzed milk. The G allele frequency was 0.09 in MOR gene and 0.68 in the DPPIV gene. But our results suggest no association between presence of the alleles G and A at position rs7608798 in DPPIV gene nor alleles A and G at position A118G of the MOR and increased incidence of ASD. Our studies emphasize the compulsion for genetic analysis in correlation with genetic factors affecting development and enhancement of autism symptoms. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Structure of the [delta]-opioid receptor bound to naltrindole

    SciTech Connect

    Granier, Sébastien; Manglik, Aashish; Kruse, Andrew C.; Kobilka, Tong Sun; Thian, Foon Sun; Weis, William I.; Kobilka, Brian K.

    2012-07-11

    The opioid receptor family comprises three members, the {mu}-, {delta}- and {kappa}-opioid receptors, which respond to classical opioid alkaloids such as morphine and heroin as well as to endogenous peptide ligands like endorphins. They belong to the G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily, and are excellent therapeutic targets for pain control. The {delta}-opioid receptor ({delta}-OR) has a role in analgesia, as well as in other neurological functions that remain poorly understood. The structures of the {mu}-OR and {kappa}-OR have recently been solved. Here we report the crystal structure of the mouse {delta}-OR, bound to the subtype-selective antagonist naltrindole. Together with the structures of the {mu}-OR and {kappa}-OR, the {delta}-OR structure provides insights into conserved elements of opioid ligand recognition while also revealing structural features associated with ligand-subtype selectivity. The binding pocket of opioid receptors can be divided into two distinct regions. Whereas the lower part of this pocket is highly conserved among opioid receptors, the upper part contains divergent residues that confer subtype selectivity. This provides a structural explanation and validation for the 'message-address' model of opioid receptor pharmacology, in which distinct 'message' (efficacy) and 'address' (selectivity) determinants are contained within a single ligand. Comparison of the address region of the {delta}-OR with other GPCRs reveals that this structural organization may be a more general phenomenon, extending to other GPCR families as well.

  13. The role of opioid receptors in morphine withdrawal in the infant rat.

    PubMed

    McPhie, A A; Barr, G A

    2000-11-30

    Exposure to opiates such as morphine can lead to psychological and physical dependence in both adult and infant humans. Infant rats experience opiate withdrawal behaviors that are qualitatively different from the withdrawal behaviors displayed by adult rats. In the adult, withdrawal is largely mediated by the mu-opioid receptor. We sought to understand more about what role each opioid receptor (mu, kappa, and delta) plays in the display of the physical withdrawal in the infant rat. Beginning on postnatal day 1, infant rats were injected with morphine sulfate twice a day for 6.5 days. On the afternoon of the seventh day the infant rats were given an i.c. injection of a vehicle, the mu-opioid receptor antagonist CTOP, the kappa-opioid receptor antagonist nor-BNI, or the delta-opioid receptor antagonist naltrindole. CTOP precipitated withdrawal behaviors in the 7-day-old rat in a dose-dependent manner. Neither nor-BNI nor naltrindole induced any significant changes in the frequency of the withdrawal behaviors. These data suggest that in the infant rat control of certain behavioral withdrawal signs is modulated primarily by the mu-opioid receptor, as is the case in the adult rat.

  14. Bioinformatics and evolution of vertebrate nociceptin and opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Stevens, Craig W

    2015-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are ancestrally related membrane proteins on cells that mediate the pharmacological effect of most drugs and neurotransmitters. GPCRs are the largest group of membrane receptor proteins encoded in the human genome. One of the most famous types of GPCRs is the opioid receptors. Opioid family receptors consist of four closely related proteins expressed in all vertebrate brains and spinal cords examined to date. The three classical types of opioid receptors shown unequivocally to mediate analgesia in animal models and in humans are the mu- (MOR), delta- (DOR), and kappa-(KOR) opioid receptor proteins. The fourth and most recent member of the opioid receptor family discovered is the nociceptin or orphanin FQ receptor (ORL). The role of ORL and its ligands in producing analgesia is not as clear, with both analgesic and hyperalgesic effects reported. All four opioid family receptor genes were cloned from expressed mRNA in a number of vertebrate species, and there are enough sequences presently available to carry out bioinformatic analysis. This chapter presents the results of a comparative analysis of vertebrate opioid receptors using pharmacological studies, bioinformatics, and the latest data from human whole-genome studies. Results confirm our initial hypotheses that the four opioid receptor genes most likely arose by whole-genome duplication, that there is an evolutionary vector of opioid receptor type divergence in sequence and function, and that the hMOR gene shows evidence of positive selection or adaptive evolution in Homo sapiens. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Opioid receptor desensitization: mechanisms and its link to tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Allouche, Stéphane; Noble, Florence; Marie, Nicolas

    2014-01-01

    Opioid receptors (OR) are part of the class A of G-protein coupled receptors and the target of the opiates, the most powerful analgesic molecules used in clinic. During a protracted use, a tolerance to analgesic effect develops resulting in a reduction of the effectiveness. So understanding mechanisms of tolerance is a great challenge and may help to find new strategies to tackle this side effect. This review will summarize receptor-related mechanisms that could underlie tolerance especially receptor desensitization. We will focus on the latest data obtained on molecular mechanisms involved in opioid receptor desensitization: phosphorylation, receptor uncoupling, internalization, and post-endocytic fate of the receptor. PMID:25566076

  16. Overview of genetic analysis of human opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Spampinato, Santi M

    2015-01-01

    The human μ-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1), due to its genetic and structural variation, has been a target of interest in several pharmacogenetic studies. The μ-opioid receptor (MOR), encoded by OPRM1, contributes to regulate the analgesic response to pain and also controls the rewarding effects of many drugs of abuse, including opioids, nicotine, and alcohol. Genetic polymorphisms of opioid receptors are candidates for the variability of clinical opioid effects. The non-synonymous polymorphism A118G of the OPRM1 has been repeatedly associated with the efficacy of opioid treatments for pain and various types of dependence. Genetic analysis of human opioid receptors has evidenced the presence of numerous polymorphisms either in exonic or in intronic sequences as well as the presence of synonymous coding variants that may have important effects on transcription, mRNA stability, and splicing, thus affecting gene function despite not directly disrupting any specific residue. Genotyping of opioid receptors is still in its infancy and a relevant progress in this field can be achieved by using advanced gene sequencing techniques described in this review that allow the researchers to obtain vast quantities of data on human genomes and transcriptomes in a brief period of time and with affordable costs.

  17. [Functional selectivity of opioid receptors ligands].

    PubMed

    Audet, Nicolas; Archer-Lahlou, Elodie; Richard-Lalonde, Mélissa; Piñeyro-Filpo, Graciela

    2010-01-01

    Opiates are the most effective analgesics available for the treatment of severe pain. However, their clinical use is restricted by unwanted side effects such as tolerance, physical dependence and respiratory depression. The strategy to develop new opiates with reduced side effects has mainly focused on the study and production of ligands that specifically bind to different opiate receptors subtypes. However, this strategy has not allowed the production of novel therapeutic ligands with a better side effects profile. Thus, other research strategies need to be explored. One which is receiving increasing attention is the possibility of exploiting ligand ability to stabilize different receptor conformations with distinct signalling profiles. This newly described property, termed functional selectivity, provides a potential means of directing the stimulus generated by an activated receptor towards a specific cellular response. Here we summarize evidence supporting the existence of ligand-specific active conformations for two opioid receptors subtypes (delta and mu), and analyze how functional selectivity may contribute in the production of longer lasting, better tolerated opiate analgesics. double dagger.

  18. Dual allosteric modulation of opioid antinociceptive potency by α2A-adrenoceptors.

    PubMed

    Chabot-Doré, Anne-Julie; Millecamps, Magali; Naso, Lina; Devost, Dominic; Trieu, Phan; Piltonen, Marjo; Diatchenko, Luda; Fairbanks, Carolyn A; Wilcox, George L; Hébert, Terence E; Stone, Laura S

    2015-12-01

    Opioid and α2-adrenoceptor (AR) agonists are analgesic when administered in the spinal cord and show a clinically beneficial synergistic interaction when co-administered. However, α2-AR antagonists can also inhibit opioid antinociception, suggesting a complex interaction between the two systems. The α2A-AR subtype is necessary for spinal adrenergic analgesia and synergy with opioids for most agonist combinations. Therefore, we investigated whether spinal opioid antinociception and opioid-adrenergic synergy were under allosteric control of the α2A-AR. Drugs were administered intrathecally in wild type (WT) and α2A-knock-out (KO) mice and antinociception was measured using the hot water tail immersion or substance P behavioral assays. The α2A-AR agonist clonidine was less effective in α2A-KO mice in both assays. The absence of the α2A-AR resulted in 10-70-fold increases in the antinociceptive potency of the opioid agonists morphine and DeltII. In contrast, neither morphine nor DeltII synergized with clonidine in α2A-KO mice, indicating that the α2AAR has both positive and negative modulatory effects on opioid antinociception. Depletion of descending adrenergic terminals with 6-OHDA resulted in a significant decrease in morphine efficacy in WT but not in α2A-KO mice, suggesting that endogenous norepinephrine acts through the α2A-AR to facilitate morphine antinociception. Based on these findings, we propose a model whereby ligand-occupied versus ligand-free α2A-AR produce distinct patterns of modulation of opioid receptor activation. In this model, agonist-occupied α2A-ARs potentiate opioid analgesia, while non-occupied α2A-ARs inhibit opioid analgesia. Exploiting such interactions between the two receptors could lead to the development of better pharmacological treatments for pain management.

  19. Dual allosteric modulation of opioid antinociceptive potency by a2A-adrenoceptors

    PubMed Central

    Chabot-Doré, Anne-Julie; Millecamps, Magali; Naso, Lina; Devost, Dominic; Trieu, Phan; Piltonen, Marjo; Diatchenko, Luda; Fairbanks, Carolyn A.; Wilcox, George L.; Hébert, Terence E.; Stone, Laura S.

    2015-01-01

    Opioid and α2-adrenoceptor (AR) agonists are analgesic when administered in the spinal cord and show a clinically beneficial synergistic interaction when co-administered. However, α2-AR antagonists can also inhibit opioid antinociception, suggesting a complex interaction between the two systems. The α2A-AR subtype is necessary for spinal adrenergic analgesia and synergy with opioids for most agonist combinations. Therefore, we investigated whether spinal opioid antinociception and opioid-adrenergic synergy were under allosteric control of the α2A-AR. Drugs were administered intrathecally in wild type (WT) and α2A-knock-out (KO) mice and antinociception was measured using hot water tail immersion or substance P behavioral assays. The α2A-AR agonist clonidine was less effective in α2A-KO mice in both assays. The absence of the α2A-AR resulted in 10–70-fold increases in the antinociceptive potency of the opioid agonists morphine and DeltII. In contrast, neither morphine nor DeltII synergized with clonidine in α2AKO mice, indicating that the α2AAR has both positive and negative modulatory effects on opioid antinociception. Depletion of descending adrenergic terminals with 6-OHDA resulted in a significant decrease in morphine efficacy in WT but not in α2A-KO mice, suggesting that endogenous norepinephrine acts through the α2A-AR to facilitate morphine antinociception. Based on these findings, we propose a model whereby ligand-occupied versus ligand-free α2A-AR produce distinct patterns of modulation of opioid receptor activation. In this model, agonist-occupied α2A-ARs potentiate opioid analgesia, while non-occupied α2A-ARs inhibit opioid analgesia. Exploiting such interactions between the two receptors could lead to the development of better pharmacological treatments for pain management. PMID:26254859

  20. Opioid receptors and legal highs: Salvia divinorum and Kratom.

    PubMed

    Babu, Kavita M; McCurdy, Christopher R; Boyer, Edward W

    2008-02-01

    Salvia divinorum and Mitragyna speciosa ("Kratom"), two unscheduled dietary supplements whose active agents are opioid receptor agonists, have discrete psychoactive effects that have contributed to their increasing popularity. Salvia divinorum contains the highly selective kappa- opioid receptor agonist salvinorin A; this compound produces visual hallucinations and synesthesia. Mitragynine, the major alkaloid identified from Kratom, has been reported as a partial opioid agonist producing similar effects to morphine. An interesting minor alkaloid of Kratom, 7-hydroxymitragynine, has been reported to be more potent than morphine. Both Kratom alkaloids are reported to activate supraspinal mu- and delta- opioid receptors, explaining their use by chronic narcotics users to ameliorate opioid withdrawal symptoms. Despite their widespread Internet availability, use of Salvia divinorum and Kratom represents an emerging trend that escapes traditional methods of toxicologic monitoring. The purpose of this article is to familiarize toxicologists and poison control specialists with these emerging psychoactive dietary supplements.

  1. Affinities of dihydrocodeine and its metabolites to opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Helmut; Vormfelde, Stefan v; Klinder, Klaus; Gundert-Remy, Ursula; Gleiter, Christoph H; Skopp, Gisela; Aderjan, Rolf; Fuhr, Uwe

    2002-08-01

    Dihydrocodeine is metabolized to dihydromorphine, dihydrocodeine-6-O-, dihydromorphine-3-O- and dihydromorphine-6-O-glucuronide, and nordihydrocodeine. The current study was conducted to evaluate the affinities of dihydrocodeine and its metabolites to mu-, delta- and kappa-opioid receptors. Codeine, morphine, d,1-methadone and levomethadone were used as controls. Displacement binding experiments were carried out at the respective opioid receptor types using preparations of guinea pig cerebral cortex and the specific opioid agonists [5H]DAMGO (mu-opioid receptor), [3H]DPDPE (delta-opioid receptor) and [3H]U69,593 (K-opioid receptor) as radioactive ligands at concentrations of 0.5, 1.0 and 1.0 nmol/l, respectively. All substances had their greatest affinity to the mu-opioid receptor. The affinities of dihydromorphine and dihydromorphine-6-O-glucuronide were at least 70 times greater compared with dihydrocodeine (Ki 0.3 micromol/l), whereas the other metabolites yielded lower affinities. For the delta-opioid receptor, the order of affinities was similar with the exception that dihydrocodeine-6-O-glucuronide revealed a doubled affinity in relation to dihydrocodeine (Ki 5.9 micromol/l). In contrast, for the K-opioid receptor, dihydrocodeine-6-O- and dihydromorphine-6-O-glucuronide had clearly lower affinities compared to the respective parent compounds. The affinity of nordihydrocodeine was almost identical to that of dihydrocodeine (Ki 14 micromol/l), whereas dihydromorphine had a 60 times higher affinity. These results suggest that dihydromorphine and its 6-O-glucuronide may provide a relevant contribution to the pharmacological effects of dihydrocodeine. The O-demethylation of dihydrocodeine to dihydromorphine is mediated by the polymorphic cytochrome P-450 enzyme CYP2D6, resulting in different metabolic profiles in extensive and poor metabolizers. About 7% of the caucasian population which are CYP2D6 poor metabolizers thus may experience therapeutic failure after

  2. Analysis of potassium and calcium imaging to assay the function of opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Spahn, Viola; Nockemann, Dinah; Machelska, Halina

    2015-01-01

    As the activation of opioid receptors leads to the modulation of potassium and calcium channels, the ion imaging represents an attractive method to analyze the function of the receptors. Here, we describe the imaging of potassium using the FluxOR™ potassium ion channel assay, and of calcium using Fura-2 acetoxymethyl ester. Specifically, we (1) characterize the activation of the G-protein-coupled inwardly rectifying potassium 2 channel by agonists of μ- and δ-opioid receptors with the aid of the FluxOR™ assay in cultured mouse dorsal root ganglion neurons, and (2) describe calcium imaging protocols to measure capsaicin-induced transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 channel activity during opioid withdrawal in transfected human embryonic kidney 293 cells.

  3. Increased habenular connectivity in opioid users is associated with an α5 subunit nicotinic receptor genetic variant.

    PubMed

    Curtis, Kaylah; Viswanath, Humsini; Velasquez, Kenia M; Molfese, David L; Harding, Mark J; Aramayo, Eduardo; Baldwin, Philip R; Ambrosi, Elisa; Madan, Alok; Patriquin, Michelle; Frueh, B Christopher; Fowler, J Christopher; Kosten, Thomas R; Nielsen, David A; Salas, Ramiro

    2017-10-01

    Opioid use disorder (OUD) is a chronic disorder with relapse based on both desire for reinforcement (craving) and avoidance of withdrawal. The aversive aspect of dependence and relapse has been associated with a small brain structure called the habenula, which expresses large numbers of both opioid and nicotinic receptors. Additionally, opioid withdrawal symptoms can be induced in opioid-treated rodents by blocking not only opioid, but also nicotinic receptors. This receptor co-localization and cross-induction of withdrawal therefore might lead to genetic variation in the nicotinic receptor influencing development of human opioid dependence through its impact on the aversive components of opioid dependence. We studied habenular resting state functional connectivity with related brain structures, specifically the striatum. We compared abstinent psychiatric patients who use opioids (N = 51) to psychiatric patients who do not (N = 254) to identify an endophenotype of opioid use that focused on withdrawal avoidance and aversion rather than the more commonly examined craving aspects of relapse. We found that habenula-striatal connectivity was stronger in opioid-using patients. Increased habenula-striatum connectivity was observed in opioid-using patients with the low risk rs16969968 GG genotype, but not in patients carrying the high risk AG or AA genotypes. We propose that increased habenula-striatum functional connectivity may be modulated by the nicotinic receptor variant rs16969968 and may lead to increased opioid use. Our data uncovered a promising brain target for development of novel anti-addiction therapies and may help the development of personalized therapies against opioid abuse. (Am J Addict 2017;26:751-759). © 2017 American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry.

  4. Animal models of motivation for drinking in rodents with a focus on opioid receptor neuropharmacology.

    PubMed

    Koob, George F; Roberts, Amanda J; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Heyser, Charles J; Katner, Simon N; Ciccocioppo, Roberto; Weiss, Friedbert

    2003-01-01

    Ethanol, like other drugs of abuse, has motivating properties that can be developed as animal models of self-administration. A major strength of the operant approach where an animal must work to obtain ethanol is that it reduces confounds due to palatability and controls for nonspecific malaise-inducing effects. In the domain of opioid peptide systems, limited access paradigms have good predictive validity. In addition, animal models of excessive drinking-either environmentally or genetically induced-also appear sensitive to blockade or inactivation of opioid peptide receptors. Ethanol availability can be predicted by cues associated with positive reinforcement, and these models are sensitive to the administration of opioid antagonists. Perhaps most exciting are the recent results suggesting that the key element in opioid peptide systems that is important for the positive reinforcing effects of ethanol is the mu-opioid receptor. How exactly ethanol modulates mu-receptor function will be a major challenge of future research. Nevertheless, the apparently critical role of the mu receptor in ethanol reinforcement refocuses the neuropharmacology of ethanol reinforcement in the opioid peptide domain and opens a novel avenue for exploring medications for treating alcoholism.

  5. Modulation of opioid receptor affinity and efficacy via N-substitution of 9β-hydroxy-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl)morphan: Synthesis and computer simulation study.

    PubMed

    Truong, Phong M; Hassan, Sergio A; Lee, Yong-Sok; Kopajtic, Theresa A; Katz, Jonathan L; Chadderdon, Aaron M; Traynor, John R; Deschamps, Jeffrey R; Jacobson, Arthur E; Rice, Kenner C

    2017-04-15

    The enantiomers of a variety of N-alkyl-, N-aralkyl-, and N-cyclopropylalkyl-9β-hydroxy-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl)morphans were synthesized employing cyanogen bromide and K2CO3 to improve the original N-demethylation procedure. Their binding affinity to the μ-, δ-, and κ-opioid receptors (ORs) was determined and functional (GTPγ(35)S) assays were carried out on those with reasonable affinity. The 1R,5R,9S-enantiomers (1R,5R,9S)-(-)-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl)-2-(4-nitrophenethyl)-2-azabicyclo[3.3.1]nonan-9-ol (1R,5R,9S-16), (1R,5R,9S)-(-) 2-cinnamyl-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl)-2-azabicyclo[3.3.1]nonan-9-ol (1R,5R,9S-20), and (1R,5R,9S)-(-)-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl)-2-(4-(trifluoromethyl)phenethyl)-2-azabicyclo[3.3.1]nonan-9-ol (1R,5R,9S-15), had high affinity for the μ-opioid receptor (e.g., 1R,5R,9S-16: Ki=0.073, 0.74, and 1.99nM, respectively). The 1R,5R,9S-16 and 1R,5R,9S-15 were full, high efficacy μ-agonists (EC50=0.74 and 18.5nM, respectively) and the former was found to be a partial agonist at δ-OR and an antagonist at κ-OR, while the latter was a partial agonist at δ-OR and κ-OR in the GTPγ(35)S assay. The enantiomer of 1R,5R,9S-16, (+)-1S,5S,9R-16 was unusual, it had good affinity for the μ-OR (Ki=26.5nM) and was an efficacious μ-antagonist (Ke=29.1nM). Molecular dynamics simulations of the μ-OR were carried out with the 1R,5R,9S-16 μ-agonist and the previously synthesized (1R,5R,9S)-(-)-5-(9-hydroxy-5-(3-hydroxyphenyl-2-phenylethyl)-2-azabicyclo[3.3.1]nonane (1R,5R,9S-(-)-NIH 11289) to provide a structural basis for the observed high affinities and efficacies. The critical roles of both the 9β-OH and the p-nitro group are elucidated, with the latter forming direct, persistent hydrogen bonds with residues deep in the binding cavity, and the former interacting with specific residues via highly structured water bridges. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  6. Imaging of opioid receptors in the central nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Henriksen, Gjermund

    2008-01-01

    In vivo functional imaging by means of positron emission tomography (PET) is the sole method for providing a quantitative measurement of μ-, κ and δ-opioid receptor-mediated signalling in the central nervous system. During the last two decades, measurements of changes to the regional brain opioidergic neuronal activation—mediated by endogenously produced opioid peptides, or exogenously administered opioid drugs—have been conducted in numerous chronic pain conditions, in epilepsy, as well as by stimulant- and opioidergic drugs. Although several PET-tracers have been used clinically for depiction and quantification of the opioid receptors changes, the underlying mechanisms for regulation of changes to the availability of opioid receptors are still unclear. After a presentation of the general signalling mechanisms of the opioid receptor system relevant for PET, a critical survey of the pharmacological properties of some currently available PET-tracers is presented. Clinical studies performed with different PET ligands are also reviewed and the compound-dependent findings are summarized. An outlook is given concluding with the tailoring of tracer properties, in order to facilitate for a selective addressment of dynamic changes to the availability of a single subclass, in combination with an optimization of the quantification framework are essentials for further progress in the field of in vivo opioid receptor imaging. PMID:18048446

  7. Endomorphins fully activate a cloned human mu opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Gong, J; Strong, J A; Zhang, S; Yue, X; DeHaven, R N; Daubert, J D; Cassel, J A; Yu, G; Mansson, E; Yu, L

    1998-11-13

    Endomorphins were recently identified as endogenous ligands with high selectivity for mu opioid receptors. We have characterized the ability of endomorphins to bind to and functionally activate the cloned human mu opioid receptor. Both endomorphin-1 and endomorphin-2 exhibited binding selectivity for the mu opioid receptor over the delta and kappa opioid receptors. Both agonists inhibited forskolin-stimulated increase of cAMP in a dose-dependent fashion. When the mu opioid receptor was coexpressed in Xenopus oocytes with G protein-activated K+ channels, application of either endomorphin activated an inward K+ current. This activation was dose-dependent and blocked by naloxone. Both endomorphins acted as full agonists with efficacy similar to that of [D-Ala2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly-ol5]enkephalin (DAMGO). These data indicate that endomorphins act as full agonists at the human mu opioid receptor, capable of stimulating the receptor to inhibit the cAMP/adenylyl cyclase pathway and activate G-protein-activated inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channels.

  8. Wheat peptides reduce oxidative stress and inhibit NO production through modulating μ-opioid receptor in a rat NSAID-induced stomach damage model.

    PubMed

    Yin, Hong; Cai, Hui-Zhen; Wang, Shao-Kang; Yang, Li-Gang; Sun, Gui-Ju

    2015-01-01

    Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) induce tissue damage and oxidative stress in animal models of stomach damage. In the present study, the protective effects of wheat peptides were evaluated in a NSAID-induced stomach damage model in rats. Different doses of wheat peptides or distilled water were administered daily by gavage for 30 days before the rat stomach damage model was established by administration of NSAIDs (aspirin and indomethacin) into the digestive tract twice. The treatment of wheat peptides decreased the NSAID-induced gastric epithelial cell degeneration and oxidative stress and NO levels in the rats. Wheat peptides significantly increased the superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) activities and decreased iNOS activity in stomach. The mRNA expression level of μ-opioid receptor was significantly decreased in wheat peptides-treated rats than that in in the control rats. The results suggest that NSAID drugs induced stomach damage in rats, wchih can be prevented by wheat peptides. The mechanisms for the protective effects were most likely through reducing NSAID-induced oxidative stress. Copyright © 2015 China Pharmaceutical University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Opioid receptors on guinea-pig intestinal crypt epithelial cells.

    PubMed Central

    Lang, M E; Davison, J S; Bates, S L; Meddings, J B

    1996-01-01

    1. Opioid peptides promote net intestinal absorption via two mechanisms: stimulation of Na+ and Cl- absorption and inhibition of Cl- secretion. Although these transport changes are predominantly mediated by submucosal neurones, it is currently unclear whether opioid peptides can regulate enterocyte function directly. We therefore tested the hypothesis that enterocytes have specific opioid receptors. 2. Villus and crypt jejunal epithelial cells were isolated by the distended sac method from anaesthetized guinea-pigs. Flow cytometry was used to resolve enterocytes from other cell types and to determine whether binding of a fluorescently labelled opioid antagonist, naltrexone-FITC, could be prevented by unlabelled mu- and delta-opioid receptor agonists. A population of crypt enterocytes (approximately 21%) exhibited high-affinity naltrexone-FITC binding to both mu- and delta-type binding sites that was stereoselective and sodium dependent. Villus enterocytes did not exhibit any of these characteristics. 3. Basal cAMP production was elevated in both villus and crypt cells treated with IBMX (3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine). Villus cells did not respond to 100 nM vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP), nor were they affected by opioid peptides. In contrast, 100 nM VIP significantly increased cAMP production in crypt epithelial cells, which was significantly reduced by both morphiceptin and D-Ser2-Leu-Enk-Thr. This opioid-mediated effect was stereoselective and blocked by the opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone. 4. These experiments suggest that enterocytes isolated from the crypt epithelium of guineapigs have both mu- and delta-types of opioid receptors. It is possible that these cells participate in opioid-mediated regulation of intestinal secretion. Images Figure 12 PMID:8951719

  10. Interactions between opioid-peptides-containing pathways and GABA(A)-receptors-mediated systems modulate panic-like-induced behaviors elicited by electric and chemical stimulation of the inferior colliculus.

    PubMed

    Calvo, Fabrício; Coimbra, Norberto Cysne

    2006-08-09

    Aiming to clarify the effect of interactive interconnections between the endogenous opioid peptides-neural links and GABAergic pathways on panic-like responses, in the present work, the effect of the peripheral and central administration of morphine or the non-specific opioid receptors antagonist naloxone was evaluated on the fear-induced responses (defensive attention, defensive immobility and escape behavior) elicited by electric and chemical stimulation of the inferior colliculus. Central microinjections of opioid drugs in the inferior colliculus were also performed followed by local administration of the GABA(A)-receptor antagonist bicuculline. The defensive behavior elicited by the blockade of GABAergic receptors in the inferior colliculus had been quantitatively analyzed, recording the number of crossing, jump, rotation and rearing, in each minute, during 30 min, in the open-field test. The opioid receptors stimulation with morphine decreased the defensive attention, the defensive immobility and escape behavior thresholds, and the non-specific opioid receptors blockade caused opposite effects, enhancing the defensive behavior thresholds. These effects were corroborated by either the stimulation or the inhibition of opioid receptors followed by the GABA(A) receptor blockade with bicuculline, microinjected into the inferior colliculus. There was a significant increase in the diverse fear-induced responses caused by bicuculline with the pretreatment of the inferior colliculus with morphine, and the opposite effect was recorded after the pretreatment of the inferior colliculus nuclei with naloxone followed by bicuculline local administration. These findings suggest an interaction between endogenous opioid-peptides-containing connections and GABA(A)-receptor-mediated system with direct influence on the organization of the panic-like or fear-induced responses elaborated in the inferior colliculus during critical emotional states.

  11. Central antinociception induced by ketamine is mediated by endogenous opioids and μ- and δ-opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Pacheco, Daniela da Fonseca; Romero, Thiago Roberto Lima; Duarte, Igor Dimitri Gama

    2014-05-08

    It is generally believed that NMDA receptor antagonism accounts for most of the anesthetic and analgesic effects of ketamine, however, it interacts at multiple sites in the central nervous system, including NMDA and non-NMDA glutamate receptors, nicotinic and muscarinic cholinergic receptors, and adrenergic and opioid receptors. Interestingly, it was shown that at supraspinal sites, ketamine interacts with the μ-opioid system and causes supraspinal antinociception. In this study, we investigated the involvement of endogenous opioids in ketamine-induced central antinociception. The nociceptive threshold for thermal stimulation was measured in Swiss mice using the tail-flick test. The drugs were administered via the intracerebroventricular route. Our results demonstrated that the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone, the μ-opioid receptor antagonist clocinnamox and the δ-opioid receptor antagonist naltrindole, but not the κ-opioid receptor antagonist nor-binaltorphimine, antagonized ketamine-induced central antinociception in a dose-dependent manner. Additionally, the administration of the aminopeptidase inhibitor bestatin significantly enhanced low-dose ketamine-induced central antinociception. These data provide evidence for the involvement of endogenous opioids and μ- and δ-opioid receptors in ketamine-induced central antinociception. In contrast, κ-opioid receptors not appear to be involved in this effect.

  12. Clinically Employed Opioid Analgesics Produce Antinociception via μ-δ Opioid Receptor Heteromers in Rhesus Monkeys

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Morphine and related drugs are widely employed as analgesics despite the side effects associated with their use. Although morphine is thought to mediate analgesia through mu opioid receptors, delta opioid receptors have been implicated in mediating some side effects such as tolerance and dependence. Here we present evidence in rhesus monkeys that morphine, fentanyl, and possibly methadone selectively activate mu-delta heteromers to produce antinociception that is potently antagonized by the delta opioid receptor antagonist, naltrindole (NTI). Studies with HEK293 cells expressing mu-delta heteromeric opioid receptors exhibit a similar antagonism profile of receptor activation in the presence of NTI. In mice, morphine was potently inhibited by naltrindole when administered intrathecally, but not intracerebroventricularly, suggesting the possible involvement of mu-delta heteromers in the spinal cord of rodents. Taken together, these results strongly suggest that, in primates, mu-delta heteromers are allosterically coupled and mediate the antinociceptive effects of three clinically employed opioid analgesics that have been traditionally viewed as mu-selective. Given the known involvement of delta receptors in morphine tolerance and dependence, our results implicate mu-delta heteromers in mediating both antinociception and these side effects in primates. These results open the door for further investigation in humans. PMID:23019498

  13. Clinically employed opioid analgesics produce antinociception via μ-δ opioid receptor heteromers in Rhesus monkeys.

    PubMed

    Yekkirala, Ajay S; Banks, Matthew L; Lunzer, Mary M; Negus, Stevens S; Rice, Kenner C; Portoghese, Philip S

    2012-09-19

    Morphine and related drugs are widely employed as analgesics despite the side effects associated with their use. Although morphine is thought to mediate analgesia through mu opioid receptors, delta opioid receptors have been implicated in mediating some side effects such as tolerance and dependence. Here we present evidence in rhesus monkeys that morphine, fentanyl, and possibly methadone selectively activate mu-delta heteromers to produce antinociception that is potently antagonized by the delta opioid receptor antagonist, naltrindole (NTI). Studies with HEK293 cells expressing mu-delta heteromeric opioid receptors exhibit a similar antagonism profile of receptor activation in the presence of NTI. In mice, morphine was potently inhibited by naltrindole when administered intrathecally, but not intracerebroventricularly, suggesting the possible involvement of mu-delta heteromers in the spinal cord of rodents. Taken together, these results strongly suggest that, in primates, mu-delta heteromers are allosterically coupled and mediate the antinociceptive effects of three clinically employed opioid analgesics that have been traditionally viewed as mu-selective. Given the known involvement of delta receptors in morphine tolerance and dependence, our results implicate mu-delta heteromers in mediating both antinociception and these side effects in primates. These results open the door for further investigation in humans.

  14. Naloxegol: First oral peripherally acting mu opioid receptor antagonists for opioid-induced constipation

    PubMed Central

    Anantharamu, Tejus; Sharma, Sushil; Gupta, Ajay Kumar; Dahiya, Navdeep; Singh Brashier, Dick B.; Sharma, Ashok Kumar

    2015-01-01

    Opioid-induced constipation (OIC) is one of the most troublesome and the most common effects of opioid use leading to deterioration in quality of life of the patients and also has potentially deleterious repercussions on adherence and compliance to opioid therapy. With the current guidelines advocating liberal use of opioids by physicians even for non-cancer chronic pain, the situation is further complicated as these individuals are not undergoing palliative care and hence there cannot be any justification to subject these patients to the severe constipation brought on by opioid therapy which is no less debilitating than the chronic pain. The aim in these patients is to prevent the opioid-induced constipation but at the same time allow the analgesic activity of opioids. Many drugs have been used with limited success but the most specific among them were the peripherally acting mu opioid receptor antagonists (PAMORA). Methylnaltrexone and alvimopan were the early drugs in this group but were not approved for oral use in OIC. However naloxegol, the latest PAMORA has been very recently approved as the first oral drug for OIC. This article gives an overview of OIC, its current management and more specifically the development and approval of naloxegol, including pharmacokinetics, details of various clinical trials, adverse effects and its current status for the management of OIC. PMID:26312011

  15. Opioid receptors and cardioprotection - 'opioidergic conditioning' of the heart.

    PubMed

    Headrick, John P; See Hoe, Louise E; Du Toit, Eugene F; Peart, Jason N

    2015-04-01

    Ischaemic heart disease (IHD) remains a major cause of morbidity/mortality globally, firmly established in Westernized or 'developed' countries and rising in prevalence in developing nations. Thus, cardioprotective therapies to limit myocardial damage with associated ischaemia-reperfusion (I-R), during infarction or surgical ischaemia, is a very important, although still elusive, clinical goal. The opioid receptor system, encompassing the δ (vas deferens), κ (ketocyclazocine) and μ (morphine) opioid receptors and their endogenous opioid ligands (endorphins, dynorphins, enkephalins), appears as a logical candidate for such exploitation. This regulatory system may orchestrate organism and organ responses to stress, induces mammalian hibernation and associated metabolic protection, triggers powerful adaptive stress resistance in response to ischaemia/hypoxia (preconditioning), and mediates cardiac benefit stemming from physical activity. In addition to direct myocardial actions, central opioid receptor signalling may also enhance the ability of the heart to withstand I-R injury. The δ- and κ-opioid receptors are strongly implicated in cardioprotection across models and species (including anti-infarct and anti-arrhythmic actions), with mixed evidence for μ opioid receptor-dependent protection in animal and human tissues. A small number of clinical trials have provided evidence of cardiac benefit from morphine or remifentanil in cardiopulmonary bypass or coronary angioplasty patients, although further trials of subtype-specific opioid receptor agonists are needed. The precise roles and utility of this GPCR family in healthy and diseased human myocardium, and in mediating central and peripheral survival responses, warrant further investigation, as do the putative negative influences of ageing, IHD co-morbidities, and relevant drugs on opioid receptor signalling and protective responses.

  16. Anti-nociception mediated by a κ opioid receptor agonist is blocked by a δ receptor agonist.

    PubMed

    Taylor, A M W; Roberts, K W; Pradhan, A A; Akbari, H A; Walwyn, W; Lutfy, K; Carroll, F I; Cahill, C M; Evans, C J

    2015-01-01

    The opioid receptor family comprises four structurally homologous but functionally distinct sub-groups, the μ (MOP), δ (DOP), κ (KOP) and nociceptin (NOP) receptors. As most opioid agonists are selective but not specific, a broad spectrum of behaviours due to activation of different opioid receptors is expected. In this study, we examine whether other opioid receptor systems influenced KOP-mediated antinociception. We used a tail withdrawal assay in C57Bl/6 mice to assay the antinociceptive effect of systemically administered opioid agonists with varying selectivity at KOP receptors. Pharmacological and genetic approaches were used to analyse the interactions of the other opioid receptors in modulating KOP-mediated antinociception. Etorphine, a potent agonist at all four opioid receptors, was not anti-nociceptive in MOP knockout (KO) mice, although etorphine is an efficacious KOP receptor agonist and specific KOP receptor agonists remain analgesic in MOP KO mice. As KOP receptor agonists are aversive, we considered KOP-mediated antinociception might be a form of stress-induced analgesia that is blocked by the anxiolytic effects of DOP receptor agonists. In support of this hypothesis, pretreatment with the DOP antagonist, naltrindole (10 mg·kg(-1) ), unmasked etorphine (3 mg·kg(-1) ) antinociception in MOP KO mice. Further, in wild-type mice, KOP-mediated antinociception by systemic U50,488H (10 mg·kg(-1) ) was blocked by pretreatment with the DOP agonist SNC80 (5 mg·kg(-1) ) and diazepam (1 mg·kg(-1) ). Systemic DOP receptor agonists blocked systemic KOP antinociception, and these results identify DOP receptor agonists as potential agents for reversing stress-driven addictive and depressive behaviours mediated through KOP receptor activation. This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2. © 2014 The

  17. Anti-nociception mediated by a κ opioid receptor agonist is blocked by a δ receptor agonist

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, A M W; Roberts, K W; Pradhan, A A; Akbari, H A; Walwyn, W; Lutfy, K; Carroll, F I; Cahill, C M; Evans, C J

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The opioid receptor family comprises four structurally homologous but functionally distinct sub-groups, the μ (MOP), δ (DOP), κ (KOP) and nociceptin (NOP) receptors. As most opioid agonists are selective but not specific, a broad spectrum of behaviours due to activation of different opioid receptors is expected. In this study, we examine whether other opioid receptor systems influenced KOP-mediated antinociception. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH We used a tail withdrawal assay in C57Bl/6 mice to assay the antinociceptive effect of systemically administered opioid agonists with varying selectivity at KOP receptors. Pharmacological and genetic approaches were used to analyse the interactions of the other opioid receptors in modulating KOP-mediated antinociception. KEY RESULTS Etorphine, a potent agonist at all four opioid receptors, was not anti-nociceptive in MOP knockout (KO) mice, although etorphine is an efficacious KOP receptor agonist and specific KOP receptor agonists remain analgesic in MOP KO mice. As KOP receptor agonists are aversive, we considered KOP-mediated antinociception might be a form of stress-induced analgesia that is blocked by the anxiolytic effects of DOP receptor agonists. In support of this hypothesis, pretreatment with the DOP antagonist, naltrindole (10 mg·kg−1), unmasked etorphine (3 mg·kg−1) antinociception in MOP KO mice. Further, in wild-type mice, KOP-mediated antinociception by systemic U50,488H (10 mg·kg−1) was blocked by pretreatment with the DOP agonist SNC80 (5 mg·kg−1) and diazepam (1 mg·kg−1). CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Systemic DOP receptor agonists blocked systemic KOP antinociception, and these results identify DOP receptor agonists as potential agents for reversing stress-driven addictive and depressive behaviours mediated through KOP receptor activation. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles

  18. Functional and ultrastructural neuroanatomy of interactive intratectal/tectonigral mesencephalic opioid inhibitory links and nigrotectal GABAergic pathways: involvement of GABAA and mu1-opioid receptors in the modulation of panic-like reactions elicited by electrical stimulation of the dorsal midbrain.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, S J; Ciscato, J G; de Oliveira, R; de Oliveira, R C; D'Angelo-Dias, R; Carvalho, A D; Felippotti, T T; Rebouças, E C C; Castellan-Baldan, L; Hoffmann, A; Corrêa, S A L; Moreira, J E; Coimbra, N C

    2005-12-01

    In the present study, the functional neuroanatomy of nigrotectal-tectonigral pathways as well as the effects of central administration of opioid antagonists on aversive stimuli-induced responses elicited by electrical stimulation of the midbrain tectum were determined. Central microinjections of naloxonazine, a selective mu(1)-opiod receptor antagonist, in the mesencephalic tectum (MT) caused a significant increase in the escape thresholds elicited by local electrical stimulation. Furthermore, either naltrexone or naloxonazine microinjected in the substantia nigra, pars reticulata (SNpr), caused a significant increase in the defensive thresholds elicited by electrical stimulation of the continuum comprised by dorsolateral aspects of the periaqueductal gray matter (dlPAG) and deep layers of the superior colliculus (dlSC), as compared with controls. These findings suggest an opioid modulation of GABAergic inhibitory inputs controlling the defensive behavior elicited by MT stimulation, in cranial aspects. In fact, iontophoretic microinjections of the neurotracer biodextran into the SNpr, a mesencephalic structure rich in GABA-containing neurons, show outputs to neural substrate of the dlSC/dlPAG involved with the generation and organization of fear- and panic-like reactions. Neurochemical lesion of the nigrotectal pathways increased the sensitivity of the MT to electrical (at alertness, freezing and escape thresholds) and chemical (blockade of GABA(A) receptors) stimulation, suggesting a tonic modulatory effect of the nigrotectal GABAergic outputs on the neural networks of the MT involved with the organization of the defensive behavior and panic-like reactions. Labeled neurons of the midbrain tectum send inputs with varicosities to ipsi and contralateral dlSC/dlPAG and ipsilateral substantia nigra, pars reticulata and compacta, in which the anterograde and retrograde tracing from a single injection indicates that the substantia nigra has reciprocal connections with

  19. Opioid requirement, opioid receptor expression, and clinical outcomes in patients with advanced prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Zylla, Dylan; Gourley, Brett L; Vang, Derek; Jackson, Scott; Boatman, Sonja; Lindgren, Bruce; Kuskowski, Michael A; Le, Chap; Gupta, Kalpna; Gupta, Pankaj

    2013-12-01

    Preclinical studies show that opioids stimulate angiogenesis and tumor progression through the mu opioid receptor (MOR). Although MOR is overexpressed in several human malignancies, the effect of chronic opioid requirement on cancer progression or survival has not been examined in humans. We performed a retrospective analysis on 113 patients identified in the Minneapolis VA Tumor Registry (test cohort) and 480 patients from the national VA Central Cancer Registry (validation cohort) who had been diagnosed with stage IV prostate cancer between 1995 and 2010 to examine whether MOR expression or opioid requirement is associated with disease progression and survival. All opioids were converted to oral morphine equivalents for comparison. Laser scanning confocal microscopy was used to analyze MOR immunoreactivity in prostate cancer biopsies. The effects of variables on outcomes were analyzed in univariable and multivariable models. In patients with metastatic prostate cancer, MOR expression and opioid requirement were independently associated with inferior progression-free survival (hazard ratio [HR] 1.65, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.33-2.07, P<.001 and HR 1.08, 95% CI 1.03-1.13, P<.001, respectively) and overall survival (HR 1.55, 95% CI 1.20-1.99, P<.001 and HR 1.05, 95% CI 1.00-1.10, P = .031, respectively). The validation cohort confirmed that increasing opioid requirement was associated with worse overall survival (HR 1.005, 95% CI 1.002-1.008, P = .001). Higher MOR expression and greater opioid requirement are associated with shorter progression-free survival and overall survival in patients with metastatic prostate cancer. Nevertheless, clinical practice should not be changed until prospective randomized trials show that opioid use is associated with inferior clinical outcomes, and that abrogation of the peripheral activities of opioids ameliorates this effect. © 2013 American Cancer Society.

  20. TGF-β and opioid receptor signaling crosstalk results in improvement of endogenous and exogenous opioid analgesia under pathological pain conditions.

    PubMed

    Lantero, Aquilino; Tramullas, Mónica; Pílar-Cuellar, Fuencisla; Valdizán, Elsa; Santillán, Rosa; Roques, Bernard P; Hurlé, María A

    2014-04-09

    Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) protects against neuroinflammatory events underlying neuropathic pain. TGF-β signaling enhancement is a phenotypic characteristic of mice lacking the TGF-β pseudoreceptor BAMBI (BMP and activin membrane-bound inhibitor), which leads to an increased synaptic release of opioid peptides and to a naloxone-reversible hypoalgesic/antiallodynic phenotype. Herein, we investigated the following: (1) the effects of BAMBI deficiency on opioid receptor expression, functional efficacy, and analgesic responses to endogenous and exogenous opioids; and (2) the involvement of the opioid system in the antiallodynic effect of TGF-β1. BAMBI-KO mice were subjected to neuropathic pain by sciatic nerve crash injury (SNI). Gene (PCR) and protein (Western blot) expressions of μ- and δ-opioid receptors were determined in the spinal cord. The inhibitory effects of agonists on the adenylyl cyclase pathway were investigated. Two weeks after SNI, wild-type mice developed mechanical allodynia and the functionality of μ-opioid receptors was reduced. By this time, BAMBI-KO mice were protected against allodynia and exhibited increased expression and function of opioid receptors. Four weeks after SNI, when mice of both genotypes had developed neuropathic pain, the analgesic responses induced by morphine and RB101 (an inhibitor of enkephalin-degrading enzymes, which increases the synaptic levels of enkephalins) were enhanced in BAMBI-KO mice. Similar results were obtained in the formalin-induced chemical-inflammatory pain model. Subcutaneous TGF-β1 infusion prevented pain development after SNI. The antiallodynic effect of TGF-β1 was naloxone-sensitive. In conclusion, modulation of the endogenous opioid system by TGF-β signaling improves the analgesic effectiveness of exogenous and endogenous opioids under pathological pain conditions.

  1. Dysregulation of kappa-opioid receptor systems by chronic nicotine modulate the nicotine withdrawal syndrome in an age-dependent manner

    PubMed Central

    Tejeda, Hugo A.; Natividad, Luis A.; Orfila, James E.; Torres, Oscar V.; O’Dell, Laura E.

    2012-01-01

    Rationale The mechanisms that mediate age differences during nicotine withdrawal are unclear. Objective This study compared kappa opioid receptor (KOR) activation in naïve and nicotine-treated adolescent and adult rats using behavioral and neurochemical approaches to study withdrawal. Methods The behavioral models used to assess withdrawal included conditioned place and elevated plus maze procedures. Deficits in dopamine transmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) were examined using microdialysis procedures. Lastly, the effects of KOR stimulation and blockade on physical signs produced upon removal of nicotine were examined in adults. Results Nicotine-treated adults displayed a robust aversion to an environment paired with a KOR agonist versus naïve adults. Neither of the adolescent groups displayed a place aversion. KOR activation produced an increase in anxiety-like behavior that was highest in nicotine-treated adults versus all other groups. KOR activation produced a decrease in NAcc dopamine that was largest in nicotine-treated adults versus all other groups. Lastly, KOR activation facilitated physical signs of upon removal of nicotine and KOR blockade reduced this effect. Conclusion Chronic nicotine enhanced the affective, anxiogenic, and neurochemical effects produced by KOR activation in adult rats. Our data suggest that chronic nicotine elicits an increase in KOR function, and this may contribute to nicotine withdrawal since KOR activation facilitated and KOR blockade prevented withdrawal signs upon removal of nicotine. Given that chronic nicotine facilitated the neurochemical effects of KOR agonists in adults but not adolescents, it is suggested that KOR regulation of mesolimbic dopamine may contribute to age differences in nicotine withdrawal. PMID:22659976

  2. Receptome: Interactions between three pain-related receptors or the "Triumvirate" of cannabinoid, opioid and TRPV1 receptors.

    PubMed

    Zádor, Ferenc; Wollemann, Maria

    2015-12-01

    A growing amount of data demonstrates the interactions between cannabinoid, opioid and the transient receptor potential (TRP) vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors. These interactions can be bidirectional, inhibitory or excitatory, acute or chronic in their nature, and arise both at the molecular level (structurally and functionally) and in physiological processes, such as pain modulation or perception. The interactions of these three pain-related receptors may also reserve important and new therapeutic applications for the treatment of chronic pain or inflammation. In this review, we summarize the main findings on the interactions between the cannabinoid, opioid and the TRPV1 receptor regarding to pain modulation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Biased Agonism of Endogenous Opioid Peptides at the μ-Opioid Receptor.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Georgina L; Lane, J Robert; Coudrat, Thomas; Sexton, Patrick M; Christopoulos, Arthur; Canals, Meritxell

    2015-08-01

    Biased agonism is having a major impact on modern drug discovery, and describes the ability of distinct G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) ligands to activate different cell signaling pathways, and to result in different physiologic outcomes. To date, most studies of biased agonism have focused on synthetic molecules targeting various GPCRs; however, many of these receptors have multiple endogenous ligands, suggesting that "natural" bias may be an unappreciated feature of these GPCRs. The μ-opioid receptor (MOP) is activated by numerous endogenous opioid peptides, remains an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of pain, and exhibits biased agonism in response to synthetic opiates. The aim of this study was to rigorously assess the potential for biased agonism in the actions of endogenous opioids at the MOP in a common cellular background, and compare these to the effects of the agonist d-Ala2-N-MePhe4-Gly-ol enkephalin (DAMGO). We investigated activation of G proteins, inhibition of cAMP production, extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 phosphorylation, β-arrestin 1/2 recruitment, and MOP trafficking, and applied a novel analytical method to quantify biased agonism. Although many endogenous opioids displayed signaling profiles similar to that of DAMGO, α-neoendorphin, Met-enkephalin-Arg-Phe, and the putatively endogenous peptide endomorphin-1 displayed particularly distinct bias profiles. These may represent examples of natural bias if it can be shown that they have different signaling properties and physiologic effects in vivo compared with other endogenous opioids. Understanding how endogenous opioids control physiologic processes through biased agonism can reveal vital information required to enable the design of biased opioids with improved pharmacological profiles and treat diseases involving dysfunction of the endogenous opioid system.

  4. Opioid Peptidomimetics: Leads for the Design of Bioavailable Mixed Efficacy Mu Opioid Receptor (MOR) Agonist/Delta Opioid Receptor (DOR) Antagonist Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Mosberg, Henry I.; Yeomans, Larisa; Harland, Aubrie A.; Bender, Aaron M.; Sobczyk-Kojiro, Katarzyna; Anand, Jessica P.; Clark, Mary J.; Jutkiewicz, Emily M.; Traynor, John R.

    2013-01-01

    We have previously described opioid peptidomimetic, 1, employing a tetrahydroquinoline scaffold and modeled on a series of cyclic tetrapeptide opioid agonists. We have recently described modifications to these peptides that confer a mu opioid receptor (MOR) agonist, delta opioid receptor (DOR) antagonist profile, which has been shown to reduce the development of tolerance to the analgesic actions of MOR agonists. Several such bifunctional ligands have been reported, but none has been demonstrated to cross the blood brain barrier. Here we describe the transfer of structural features that evoked MOR agonist/DOR antagonist behavior in the cyclic peptides to the tetrahydroquinoline scaffold and show that the resulting peptidomimetics maintain the desired pharmacological profile. Further, the 4R diastereomer of 1 was fully efficacious and approximately equipotent to morphine in the mouse warm water tail withdrawal assay following intraperitoneal administration and thus a promising lead for the development of opioid analgesics with reduced tolerance. PMID:23419026

  5. β-arrestins: regulatory role and therapeutic potential in opioid and cannabinoid receptor-mediated analgesia.

    PubMed

    Raehal, Kirsten M; Bohn, Laura M

    2014-01-01

    Pain is a complex disorder with neurochemical and psychological components contributing to the severity, the persistence, and the difficulty in adequately treating the condition. Opioid and cannabinoids are two classes of analgesics that have been used to treat pain for centuries and are arguably the oldest of "pharmacological" interventions used by man. Unfortunately, they also produce several adverse side effects that can complicate pain management. Opioids and cannabinoids act at G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), and much of their effects are mediated by the mu-opioid receptor (MOR) and cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R), respectively. These receptors couple to intracellular second messengers and regulatory proteins to impart their biological effects. In this chapter, we review the role of the intracellular regulatory proteins, β-arrestins, in modulating MOR and CB1R and how they influence the analgesic and side-effect profiles of opioid and cannabinoid drugs in vivo. This review of the literature suggests that the development of opioid and cannabinoid agonists that bias MOR and CB1R toward G protein signaling cascades and away from β-arrestin interactions may provide a novel mechanism by which to produce analgesia with less severe adverse effects.

  6. β-Arrestins: Regulatory Role and Therapeutic Potential in Opioid and Cannabinoid Receptor-Mediated Analgesia

    PubMed Central

    Bohn, Laura M.

    2016-01-01

    Pain is a complex disorder with neurochemical and psychological components contributing to the severity, the persistence, and the difficulty in adequately treating the condition. Opioid and cannabinoids are two classes of analgesics that have been used to treat pain for centuries and are arguably the oldest of “pharmacological” interventions used by man. Unfortunately, they also produce several adverse side effects that can complicate pain management. Opioids and cannabinoids act at G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), and much of their effects are mediated by the mu-opioid receptor (MOR) and cannabinoid CB1 receptor (CB1R), respectively. These receptors couple to intracellular second messengers and regulatory proteins to impart their biological effects. In this chapter, we review the role of the intracellular regulatory proteins, β-arrestins, in modulating MOR and CB1R and how they influence the analgesic and side-effect profiles of opioid and cannabinoid drugs in vivo. This review of the literature suggests that the development of opioid and cannabinoid agonists that bias MOR and CB1R toward G protein signaling cascades and away from β-arrestin interactions may provide a novel mechanism by which to produce analgesia with less severe adverse effects. PMID:24292843

  7. Combined autoradiographic-immunocytochemical analysis of opioid receptors and opioid peptide neuronal systems in brain

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, M.E.; Khachaturian, H.; Watson, S.J.

    1985-01-01

    Using adjacent section autoradiography-immunocytochemistry, the distribution of (TH)naloxone binding sites was studied in relation to neuronal systems containing (Leu)enkephalin, dynorphin A, or beta-endorphin immunoreactivity in rat brain. Brain sections from formaldehyde-perfused rats show robust specific binding of (TH)naloxone, the pharmacological (mu-like) properties of which appear unaltered. In contrast, specific binding of the delta ligand (TH)D-Ala2,D-Leu5-enkephalin was virtually totally eliminated as a result of formaldehyde perfusion. Using adjacent section analysis, the authors have noted associations between (TH)naloxone binding sites and one, two, or all three opioid systems in different brain regions; however, in some areas, no apparent relationship could be observed. Within regions, the relationship was complex. The complexity of the association between (TH)naloxone binding sites and the multiple opioid systems, and previous reports of co-localization of mu and kappa receptors in rat brain, are inconsistent with a simple-one-to-one relationship between a given opioid precursor and opioid receptor subtype. Instead, since differential processing of the three precursors gives rise to peptides of varying receptor subtype potencies and selectivities, the multiple peptide-receptor relationships may point to a key role of post-translational processing in determining the physiological consequences of opioid neurotransmission.

  8. Periaqueductal gray μ and κ opioid receptors determine behavioral selection from maternal to predatory behavior in lactating rats.

    PubMed

    Klein, Marianne Orlandini; Cruz, Aline de Mello; Machado, Franciele Corrêa; Picolo, Gisele; Canteras, Newton Sabino; Felicio, Luciano Freitas

    2014-11-01

    Every mother must optimize her time between caring for her young and her subsistence. The rostro lateral portion of the periaqueductal grey (rlPAG) is a critical site that modulates the switch between maternal and predatory behavior. Opioids play multiple roles in both maternal behavior and this switching process. The present study used a pharmacological approach to evaluate the functional role of rlPAG μ and κ opioid receptors in behavioral selection. Rat dams were implanted with a guide cannula in the rlPAG and divided into three experiments in which we tested the role of opioid agonists (Experiment 1), the influence of μ and κ opioid receptor blockade in the presence of morphine (Experiment 2), and the influence of μ and κ opioid receptor blockade (Experiment 3). After behavioral test, in Experiment 4, we evaluated rlPAG μ and κ receptor activation in all Experiments 1-3. The results showed that massive opioidergic activation induced by morphine in the rlPAG inhibited maternal behavior without interfering with predatory hunting. No behavioral changes and no receptor activation were promoted by the specific agonist alone. However, κ receptor blockade increased hunting behavior and increased the level of μ receptor activation in the rlPAG. Thus, endogenous opioidergic tone might be modulated by a functional interaction between opioid receptor subtypes. Such a compensatory receptor interaction appears to be relevant for behavioral selection among motivated behaviors. These findings indicate a role for multiple opioid receptor interactions in the modulation of behavioral selection between maternal and predatory behaviors in the PAG. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. [Endomorphins--endogenous ligands of the mu-opioid receptor].

    PubMed

    Perlikowska, Renata; Fichna, Jakub; Janecka, Anna

    2009-01-01

    Two endogenous opioid peptides with extremely high mu-opioid receptor affinity and selectivity, endomorphin-1 and endomorphin-2, were: discovered and isolated from the mammalian brain in 1997. Endomorphins are amidated tetrapeptides, structurally different from so called typical opioids: enkephalins, dynorphins and endorphins. A protein precursor of endomorphins and a gene encoding their sequence remain unknown. Endomorphins are unable to cross the blood-brain barrier because of their low hydrophobicity. In animal models, these peptides turned out to be very potent in relieving neuropathic and inflammatory pain. In comparison with morphine, a prototype opioid receptor ligand, endomorphins produces less undesired side effects. In this article we describe the discovery of endomorphins, their cellular localization and functions in the organism, as well as their structure-activity relationships and biodegradation pathways.

  10. Biased mu-opioid receptor ligands: a promising new generation of pain therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Siuda, Edward R; Carr, Richard; Rominger, David H; Violin, Jonathan D

    2016-12-06

    Opioid chemistry and biology occupy a pivotal place in the history of pharmacology and medicine. Morphine offers unmatched efficacy in alleviating acute pain, but is also associated with a host of adverse side effects. The advent of biased agonism at G protein-coupled receptors has expanded our understanding of intracellular signaling and highlighted the concept that certain ligands are able to differentially modulate downstream pathways. The ability to target one pathway over another has allowed for the development of biased ligands with robust clinical efficacy and fewer adverse events. In this review we summarize these concepts with an emphasis on biased mu opioid receptor pharmacology and highlight how far opioid pharmacology has evolved.

  11. Opioid modulation of prolactin secretion induced by stress during late pregnancy. Role of ovarian steroids.

    PubMed

    Valdez, Susana R; Pennacchio, Gisela E; Gamboa, Dante F; de Di Nasso, Elina G; Bregonzio, Claudia; Soaje, Marta

    2014-06-01

    The opioid system modulates prolactin release during late pregnancy. Its role and the participation of ovarian hormones in this modulation are explored in ether stress-induced prolactin release. Estrous, 3-day and 19-day pregnant rats were used. We administered the antagonist mifepristone (Mp) and tamoxifen to evaluate progesterone and estradiol action in naloxone (NAL, opioid antagonist) or saline treated rats. Ether stress had no effect on serum prolactin levels in controls but increased prolactin release in NAL-treated rats. Prolactin response to stress in NAL-treated rats was blocked by l-DOPA administration. Mp treatment on day 18 of pregnancy increased prolactin levels after stress without alterations by NAL. Tamoxifen on days 14 and 15 of pregnancy completely blocked Mp and NAL effects on prolactin release at late pregnancy. In contrast, stress significantly increased prolactin levels in estrous rats and pretreatment with NAL prevented this. On day 3 of pregnancy, at 6.00 p.m., stress and NAL treatment inhibited prolactin levels in saline-treated rat. No effect of stress or NAL administration was detected on day 3 of pregnancy at 9.00 a.m. icv administration of specific opioids antagonist, B-Funaltrexamine but not Nor-Binaltorphimine or Naltrindole, caused a significant increase in stress-induced prolactin release. Opioid system suppression of prolactin stress response during late pregnancy was observed only after progesterone withdrawal, involving a different opioid mechanism from its well-established stimulatory role. This mechanism acts through a mu opioid receptor and requires estrogen participation. The opioid system and progesterone may modulate stress-induced prolactin release, probably involving a putative prolactin-releasing factor. Copyright © 2014 Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences. Published by Elsevier Urban & Partner Sp. z o.o. All rights reserved.

  12. Endogenous μ-opioid peptides modulate immune response towards malignant melanoma.

    PubMed

    Boehncke, Sandra; Hardt, Katja; Schadendorf, Dirk; Henschler, Reinhard; Boehncke, Wolf-Henning; Duthey, Beatrice

    2011-01-01

    Opioids exert major effects not only in the central nervous system but also in immune responses. We investigated the effects of μ-opioid peptides, secreted by tumor cells, on anti-tumor immune responses. For this purpose, tumor growth was studied in wild-type and μ-opioid receptor-deficient (MOR-/-) mice injected with B16 melanoma cells. The ability of these cells to produce opioids was studied by Western blots in vitro. Finally, biopsy material from human melanomas was investigated by immunohistochemistry for ß endorphin expression. Injection of B16 melanoma cells, producing endogenous ß endorphin, in the flank of MOR-/- mice revealed a profound reduction in tumor growth, paralleled by a significantly higher infiltration of immune cells into the tumors, when compared to tumor growth after injection of B16 melanoma cells into wild-type mice. Opioids present in B16 cell supernatant significantly reduced the proliferation of normal but not MOR-/- leucocytes. Immunohistochemical analyses of biopsies from human melanoma tissues showed a positive correlation between expression of ß endorphin and tumor progression. Our data provide evidence that μ-opioid peptides may play a major role in cancer progression by modulating immune response. This finding may have implications for the future optimization of immunointerventions for cancer.

  13. G-protein receptor kinase 3 (GRK3) influences opioid analgesic tolerance but not opioid withdrawal

    PubMed Central

    Terman, Gregory W; Jin, Wenzhen; Cheong, Young-Pyo; Lowe, Janet; Caron, Marc G; Lefkowitz, Robert J; Chavkin, Charles

    2003-01-01

    Tolerance to opioids frequently follows repeated drug administration and affects the clinical utility of these analgesics. Studies in simple cellular systems have demonstrated that prolonged activation of opioid receptors produces homologous receptor desensitization by G-protein receptor kinase mediated receptor phosphorylation and subsequent β-arrestin binding. To define the role of this regulatory mechanism in the control of the electrophysiological and behavioral responses to opioids, we used mice having a targeted disruption of the G-protein receptor kinase 3 (GRK3) gene. Mice lacking GRK3 did not differ from wild-type littermates neither in their response latencies to noxious stimuli on the hot-plate test nor in their acute antinociceptive responses to fentanyl or morphine. Tolerance to the electrophysiological response to the opioid fentanyl, measured in vitro in the hippocampus, was blocked by GRK3 deletion. In addition, tolerance to the antinociceptive effects of fentanyl was significantly reduced in GRK3 knockouts compared to wild-type littermate controls. Tolerance to the antinociceptive effects of morphine was not affected by GRK3 deletion although morphine tolerance in hippocampal slices from GRK3 knockout mice was significantly inhibited. Tolerance developed more slowly in vitro to morphine than fentanyl supporting previous work in in vitro systems showing a correlation between agonist efficacy and GRK3-mediated desensitization. The results of these studies suggest that GRK3-mediated mechanisms are important components of both electrophysiologic and behavioral opioid tolerance. Fentanyl, a high efficacy opioid, more effectively produced GRK3-dependent effects than morphine, a low efficacy agonist. PMID:14662727

  14. Nucleus accumbens μ-opioid receptors mediate social reward.

    PubMed

    Trezza, Viviana; Damsteegt, Ruth; Achterberg, E J Marijke; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J

    2011-04-27

    Positive social interactions are essential for emotional well-being and proper behavioral development of young individuals. Here, we studied the neural underpinnings of social reward by investigating the involvement of opioid neurotransmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) in social play behavior, a highly rewarding social interaction in adolescent rats. Intra-NAc infusion of morphine (0.05-0.1 μg) increased pinning and pouncing, characteristic elements of social play behavior in rats, and blockade of NAc opioid receptors with naloxone (0.5 μg) prevented the play-enhancing effects of systemic morphine (1 mg/kg, s.c.) administration. Thus, stimulation of opioid receptors in the NAc was necessary and sufficient for morphine to increase social play. Intra-NAc treatment with the selective μ-opioid receptor agonist [D-Ala(2),N-MePhe(4),Gly(5)-ol]enkephalin (DAMGO) (0.1-10 ng) and the μ-opioid receptor antagonist Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Arg-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH(2) (CTAP) (0.3-3 μg) increased and decreased social play, respectively. The δ-opioid receptor agonist DPDPE ([D-Pen(2),D-Pen(5)]-enkephalin) (0.3-3 μg) had no effects, whereas the κ-opioid receptor agonist U69593 (N-methyl-2-phenyl-N-[(5R,7S,8S)-7-(pyrrolidin-1-yl)-1-oxaspiro[4.5]dec-8-yl]acetamide) (0.01-1 μg) decreased social play. Intra-NAc treatment with β-endorphin (0.01-1 μg) increased social play, but met-enkephalin (0.1-5 μg) and the enkephalinase inhibitor thiorphan (0.1-1 μg) were ineffective. DAMGO (0.1-10 ng) increased social play after infusion into both the shell and core subregions of the NAc. Last, intra-NAc infusion of CTAP (3 μg) prevented the development of social play-induced conditioned place preference. These findings identify NAc μ-opioid receptor stimulation as an important neural mechanism for the attribution of positive value to social interactions in adolescent rats. Altered NAc μ-opioid receptor function may underlie social impairments in psychiatric disorders such as autism

  15. Opioid receptor agonists reduce brain edema in stroke.

    PubMed

    Yang, Li; Wang, Hezhen; Shah, Kaushik; Karamyan, Vardan T; Abbruscato, Thomas J

    2011-04-06

    Cerebral edema is a leading cause of mortality in stroke patients. The purpose of this study was to assess a non-selective opioid receptor agonist, biphalin, in decreasing reducing brain edema formation using both in vitro and in vivo models of stroke. For the in situ model of ischemia, hippocampal slices were exposed to oxygen glucose deprivation (OGD) conditions and we observed that hippocampal water content was increased, compared to normoxia. Treatment with the mu agonist, Tyr-D-Ala', N-CH, -Phe4, Glyol-Enkephalin (DAMGO), delta opioid agonists, D-pen(2), D-phe(5) enkephalin (DPDPE), and kappa agonist, U50 488, all significantly decreased brain slice water gain. Interestingly, the non-selective agonist, biphalin, exhibited a statistically significant (P<0.01) greater effect in decreasing water content in OGD-exposed hippocampal slices, compared with mu, delta, and kappa selective opioid agonists. Moreover, biphalin exhibited anti-edematous effects in a dose responsive manner. The non-selective opioid antagonist, naloxone, returned the water content nearly back to original OGD values for all opioid agonist treatments, supporting that these effects were mediated by an opioid receptor pathway. Furthermore, biphalin significantly decreased edema (53%) and infarct (48%) ratios, and neuronal recovery from stroke, compared with the vehicle-treated groups in a 12h permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model of focal ischemia. Biphalin also significantly decreased the cell volume increase in primary neuronal cells exposed to OGD condition. These data suggest that opioid receptor activation may provide neuroprotection during stroke and further investigations are needed in the development of novel opioid agonist as efficacious treatments for brain ischemia.

  16. Actions of tilidine and nortilidine on cloned opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Thierry, Christophe; Boeynaems, Jean-Marie; Paolo, Meoni

    2005-01-04

    Tilidine, alone or combined with naloxone to prevent drug abuse, is used as an oral opioid analgesic. Although the analgesic action of tilidine and its active metabolite nortilidine is reversed by naloxone and therefore believed to involve the activation of the Mu opioid (MOP, OP3, mu) receptor, this has never been studied in recombinant systems. We have measured the selectivity of tilidine and nortilidine for human opioid and opioid-like receptors stably expressed in CHO-K1 cells, using the inhibition of the forskolin (FK)-induced accumulation of cAMP as endpoint. In cells expressing the MOP receptor, tilidine and nortilidine inhibited cAMP accumulation with IC50 of 11 microM and 110 nM, respectively. The agonist effects of nortilidine and [D-Ala2-MePhe4-Gly5-ol]enkephalin (DAMGO) on the MOP receptor were reversed by naloxone with very similar IC50 (1.2 versus 1.8 nM). At concentrations up to 100 microM, tilidine and nortilidine had no agonist effect on the DOP, KOP and NOP receptors. In conclusion, this study on cloned human receptors demonstrates that nortilidine is a selective agonist of the MOP receptor.

  17. Non-analgesic effects of opioids: management of opioid-induced constipation by peripheral opioid receptor antagonists: prevention or withdrawal?

    PubMed

    Holzer, Peter

    2012-01-01

    The therapeutic action of opioid analgesics is compromised by peripheral adverse effects among which opioid-induced constipation (OIC) is the most disabling, with a prevalence reported to vary between 15 and 90 %. Although OIC is usually treated with laxatives, there is insufficient clinical evidence that laxatives are efficacious in this indication. In contrast, there is ample evidence from double- blind, randomized and placebo-controlled trials that peripheral opioid receptor antagonists (PORAs) counteract OIC. This specific treatment modality is currently based on subcutaneous methylnaltrexone for the interruption of OIC in patients with advanced illness, and a fixed combination of oral prolonged-release naloxone with prolonged-release oxycodone for the prevention of OIC in the treatment of non-cancer and cancer pain. Both drugs counteract OIC while the analgesic effect of opioids remains unabated. The clinical studies show that more than 50 % of the patients with constipation under opioid therapy may benefit from the use of PORAs, while PORA-resistant patients are likely to suffer from non-opioid-induced constipation, the prevalence of which increases with age. While the addition of naloxone to oxycodone seems to act by preventing OIC, the intermittent dosing of methylnaltrexone every other day seems to stimulate defaecation by provoking an intestinal withdrawal response. The availability of PORAs provides a novel opportunity to specifically control OIC and other peripheral adverse effects of opioid analgesics (e.g., urinary retention and pruritus). The continuous dosing of a PORA has the advantage of few adverse effects, while intermittent dosing of a PORA can be associated with abdominal cramp-like pain.

  18. Opioid receptors regulate the extinction of Pavlovian fear conditioning.

    PubMed

    McNally, Gavan P; Westbrook, R Frederick

    2003-12-01

    Rats received a single pairing of an auditory conditioned stimulus (CS) with a footshock unconditioned stimulus (US). The fear (freezing) that had accrued to the CS was then extinguished. Injection of naloxone prior to this extinction significantly impaired the development of extinction. This impairment was mediated by opioid receptors in the brain and was not observed when naloxone was injected after extinction training. Finally, an injection of naloxone on test failed to reinstate extinguished responding that had already accrued to the CS. These experiments show that opioid receptors regulate the development, but not the expression, of fear extinction and are discussed with reference to the roles of opioid receptors in US processing, memory, and appetitive motivation.

  19. Hydrogen sulphide induces μ opioid receptor-dependent analgesia in a rodent model of visceral pain

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Hydrogen sulphide (H2S) is a gaseous neuro-mediator that exerts analgesic effects in rodent models of visceral pain by activating KATP channels. A body of evidence support the notion that KATP channels interact with endogenous opioids. Whether H2S-induced analgesia involves opioid receptors is unknown. Methods The perception of painful sensation induced by colorectal distension (CRD) in conscious rats was measured by assessing the abdominal withdrawal reflex. The contribution of opioid receptors to H2S-induced analgesia was investigated by administering rats with selective μ, κ and δ opioid receptor antagonists and antisenses. To investigate whether H2S causes μ opioid receptor (MOR) transactivation, the neuronal like cells SKNMCs were challenged with H2S in the presence of MOR agonist (DAMGO) or antagonist (CTAP). MOR activation and phosphorylation, its association to β arrestin and internalization were measured. Results H2S exerted a potent analgesic effects on CRD-induced pain. H2S-induced analgesia required the activation of the opioid system. By pharmacological and molecular analyses, a robust inhibition of H2S-induced analgesia was observed in response to central administration of CTAP and MOR antisense, while κ and δ receptors were less involved. H2S caused MOR transactivation and internalization in SKNMCs by a mechanism that required AKT phosphorylation. MOR transactivation was inhibited by LY294002, a PI3K inhibitor, and glibenclamide, a KATP channels blocker. Conclusions This study provides pharmacological and molecular evidence that antinociception exerted by H2S in a rodent model of visceral pain is modulated by the transactivation of MOR. This observation provides support for development of new pharmacological approaches to visceral pain. PMID:20540729

  20. Supraspinal peroxynitrite modulates pain signaling by suppressing the endogenous opioid pathway

    PubMed Central

    Little, Joshua W.; Chen, Zhoumou; Doyle, Tim; Porreca, Frank; Ghaffari, Mahsa; Neumann, William L.; Salvemini, Daniela

    2012-01-01

    Peroxynitrite (PN, ONOO−) is a potent oxidant and nitrating agent that contributes to pain through peripheral and spinal mechanisms, but its supraspinal role is unknown. We present evidence here that PN in the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM) is essential for descending nociceptive modulation in rats during inflammatory and neuropathic pain through PN-mediated suppression of opioid signaling. Carrageenan-induced thermal hyperalgesia was associated with increased 3-nitrotyrosine (NT), a PN biomarker, in the RVM. Furthermore, intra-RVM microinjections of the PN decomposition catalyst (PNDC), Fe(III)-5,10,15,20-tetrakis(N-methyl-pyridinium-4-yl)porphyrin (FeTMPyP5+) dose-dependently reversed this thermal hyperalgesia. These effects of FeTMPyP5+ were abrogated by intra-RVM naloxone, implicating potential interplay between PN and opioids. In support, we identified NT co-localization with the endogenous opioid, enkephalin (ENK), in the RVM during thermal hyperalgesia, suggesting potential in situ interactions. To address the functional significance of such interactions, we exposed methionine-enkephalin (MENK) to PN and identified the major metabolite, 3-nitrotyrosine-methionine-sulfoxide (NSO-MENK), using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LCMS). Next, we isolated, purified, and tested NSO-MENK for opioid receptor binding affinity and analgesic effects. Compared to MENK, this NSO-MENK metabolite lacked appreciable binding affinity for δ, µ, and κ opioid receptors. Intrathecal injection of NSO-MENK in rats did not evoke antinociception suggesting that PN-mediated chemical modifications of ENK suppress opioid signaling. When extended to chronic pain, intra-RVM FeTMPyP5+ produced naloxone-sensitive reversal of mechanical allodynia in rats following chronic constriction injury (CCI) of the sciatic nerve. Collectively, our data reveal the central role of PN in RVM descending facilitation during inflammatory and neuropathic pain potentially through anti-opioid

  1. Role of opioid receptors in the reinstatement of opioid-seeking behavior: an overview.

    PubMed

    Fattore, Liana; Fadda, Paola; Antinori, Silvia; Fratta, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Opioid abuse in humans is characterized by discontinuous periods of drug use and abstinence. With time, the probability of falling into renewed drug consumption becomes particularly high and constitutes a considerable problem in the management of heroin addicts. The major problem in the treatment of opioid dependence still remains the occurrence of relapse, to which stressful life events, renewed use of heroin, and exposure to drug-associated environmental cues are all positively correlated. To study the neurobiology of relapse, many research groups currently use the reinstatement animal model, which greatly contributed to disentangle the mechanisms underlying relapse to drug-seeking in laboratory animals. The use of this model is becoming increasingly popular worldwide, and new versions have been recently developed to better appreciate the differential contribution of each opioid receptor subtype to the relapse phenomenon. In this chapter we review the state of the art of our knowledge on the specific role of the opioid receptors as unrevealed by the reinstatement animal model of opioid-seeking behavior.

  2. Designing Safer Analgesics via μ-Opioid Receptor Pathways.

    PubMed

    Chan, H C Stephen; McCarthy, Dillon; Li, Jianing; Palczewski, Krzysztof; Yuan, Shuguang

    2017-09-19

    Pain is both a major clinical and economic problem, affecting more people than diabetes, heart disease, and cancer combined. While a variety of prescribed or over-the-counter (OTC) medications are available for pain management, opioid medications, especially those acting on the μ-opioid receptor (μOR) and related pathways, have proven to be the most effective, despite some serious side effects including respiration depression, pruritus, dependence, and constipation. It is therefore imperative that both academia and industry develop novel μOR analgesics which retain their opioid analgesic properties but with fewer or no adverse effects. In this review we outline recent progress towards the discovery of safer opioid analgesics. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Mu opioid receptor binding sites in human brain

    SciTech Connect

    Pilapil, C.; Welner, S.; Magnan, J.; Zamir, N.; Quirion, R.

    1986-01-01

    Our experiments focused on the examination of the distribution of mu opioid receptor binding sites in normal human brain using the highly selective ligand (/sup 3/H)DAGO, in both membrane binding assay and in vitro receptor autoradiography. Mu opioid binding sites are very discretely distributed in human brain with high densities of sites found in the posterior amygdala, caudate, putamen, hypothalamus and certain cortical areas. Moreover the autoradiographic distribution of (/sup 3/H)DAGO binding sites clearly reveals the discrete lamination (layers I and III-IV) of mu sites in cortical areas.

  4. Opioid Receptor Function Is Regulated by Post-endocytic Peptide Processing*

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Achla; Gomes, Ivone; Wardman, Jonathan; Devi, Lakshmi A.

    2014-01-01

    Most neuroendocrine peptides are generated in the secretory compartment by proteolysis of the precursors at classical cleavage sites consisting of basic residues by well studied endopeptidases belonging to the subtilisin superfamily. In contrast, a subset of bioactive peptides is generated by processing at non-classical cleavage sites that do not contain basic residues. Neither the peptidases responsible for non-classical cleavages nor the compartment involved in such processing has been well established. Members of the endothelin-converting enzyme (ECE) family are considered good candidate enzymes because they exhibit functional properties that are consistent with such a role. In this study we have explored a role for ECE2 in endocytic processing of δ opioid peptides and its effect on modulating δ opioid receptor function by using selective inhibitors of ECE2 that we had identified previously by homology modeling and virtual screening of a library of small molecules. We found that agonist treatment led to intracellular co-localization of ECE2 with δ opioid receptors. Furthermore, selective inhibitors of ECE2 and reagents that increase the pH of the acidic compartment impaired receptor recycling by protecting the endocytosed peptide from degradation. This, in turn, led to a substantial decrease in surface receptor signaling. Finally, we showed that treatment of primary neurons with the ECE2 inhibitor during recycling led to increased intracellular co-localization of the receptors and ECE2, which in turn led to decreased receptor recycling and signaling by the surface receptors. Together, these results support a role for differential modulation of opioid receptor signaling by post-endocytic processing of peptide agonists by ECE2. PMID:24847082

  5. Peripheral δ-opioid receptors attenuate the exercise pressor reflex

    PubMed Central

    Yamauchi, Katsuya; Kim, Joyce; Ruiz-Velasco, Victor; Kaufman, Marc P.

    2013-01-01

    In rats with ligated femoral arteries, the exercise pressor reflex is exaggerated, an effect that is attenuated by stimulation of peripheral μ-opioid receptors on group IV metabosensitive afferents. In contrast, δ-opioid receptors are expressed mostly on group III mechanosensitive afferents, a finding that prompted us to determine whether stimulation of these opioid receptors could also attenuate the exaggerated exercise pressor reflex in “ligated” rats. We found femoral arterial injection of [D-Pen2,D-Pen5]enkephalin (DPDPE; 1.0 μg), a δ-opioid agonist, significantly attenuated the pressor and cardioaccelerator components of the exercise pressor reflex evoked by hindlimb muscle contraction in both rats with ligated and patent femoral arteries. DPDPE significantly decreased the pressor responses to muscle mechanoreflex activation, evoked by tendon stretch, in ligated rats only. DPDPE (1.0 μg) had no effect in either group on the pressor and cardioaccelerator responses to capsaicin (0.2 μg), which primarily stimulates group IV afferents. DPDPE (1.0 μg) had no effect on the pressor and cardioaccelerator responses to lactic acid (24 mM), which stimulates group III and IV afferents, in rats with patent femoral arteries but significantly decreased the pressor response in ligated rats. Western blots revealed the amount of protein comprising the δ-opioid receptor was greater in dorsal root ganglia innervating hindlimbs with ligated femoral arteries than in dorsal root ganglia innervating hindlimbs with patent femoral arteries. Our findings support the hypothesis that stimulation of δ-opioid receptors on group III afferents attenuated the exercise pressor reflex. PMID:23934854

  6. Opioid receptor internalization contributes to dermorphin-mediated antinociception

    PubMed Central

    Macey, Tara A.; Ingram, Susan L.; Bobeck, Erin N.; Hegarty, Deborah M.; Aicher, Sue A.; Arttamangkul, Seksiri; Morgan, Michael M.

    2010-01-01

    Microinjection of opioids into the ventrolateral periaqueductal gray (vlPAG) produces antinociception in part by binding to mu-opioid receptors (MOPrs). Although both high and low efficacy agonists produce antinociception, low efficacy agonists such as morphine produce limited MOPr internalization suggesting that MOPr internalization and signaling leading to antinociception are independent. This hypothesis was tested in awake, behaving rats using DERM-A594, a fluorescently labeled dermorphin analog, and internalization blockers. Microinjection of DERM-A594 into the vlPAG produced both antinociception and internalization of DERM-A594. Administration of the irreversible opioid receptor antagonist beta-CNA prior to DERM-A594 microinjection reduced both the antinociceptive effect and the number of DERM-A594 labeled cells demonstrating that both effects are opioid receptor-mediated. Pretreatment with the internalization blockers dynamin dominant-negative inhibitory peptide (dynamin-DN) and concanavalinA (ConA) attenuated both DERM-A594 internalization and antinociception. Microinjection of dynamin-DN and ConA also decreased the antinociceptive potency of the unlabeled opioid agonist dermorphin when microinjected into the vlPAG as demonstrated by rightward shifts in the dose-response curves. In contrast, administration of dynamin-DN had no effect on the antinociceptive effect of microinjecting the GABAA antagonist bicuculline into the vlPAG. The finding that dermorphin-induced antinociception is attenuated by blocking receptor internalization indicates that key parts of opioid receptor-mediated signaling depend on internalization. PMID:20394808

  7. Peripheral δ-opioid receptors attenuate the exercise pressor reflex.

    PubMed

    Leal, Anna K; Yamauchi, Katsuya; Kim, Joyce; Ruiz-Velasco, Victor; Kaufman, Marc P

    2013-10-15

    In rats with ligated femoral arteries, the exercise pressor reflex is exaggerated, an effect that is attenuated by stimulation of peripheral μ-opioid receptors on group IV metabosensitive afferents. In contrast, δ-opioid receptors are expressed mostly on group III mechanosensitive afferents, a finding that prompted us to determine whether stimulation of these opioid receptors could also attenuate the exaggerated exercise pressor reflex in "ligated" rats. We found femoral arterial injection of [D-Pen2,D-Pen5]enkephalin (DPDPE; 1.0 μg), a δ-opioid agonist, significantly attenuated the pressor and cardioaccelerator components of the exercise pressor reflex evoked by hindlimb muscle contraction in both rats with ligated and patent femoral arteries. DPDPE significantly decreased the pressor responses to muscle mechanoreflex activation, evoked by tendon stretch, in ligated rats only. DPDPE (1.0 μg) had no effect in either group on the pressor and cardioaccelerator responses to capsaicin (0.2 μg), which primarily stimulates group IV afferents. DPDPE (1.0 μg) had no effect on the pressor and cardioaccelerator responses to lactic acid (24 mM), which stimulates group III and IV afferents, in rats with patent femoral arteries but significantly decreased the pressor response in ligated rats. Western blots revealed the amount of protein comprising the δ-opioid receptor was greater in dorsal root ganglia innervating hindlimbs with ligated femoral arteries than in dorsal root ganglia innervating hindlimbs with patent femoral arteries. Our findings support the hypothesis that stimulation of δ-opioid receptors on group III afferents attenuated the exercise pressor reflex.

  8. Buprenorphine-induced antinociception is mediated by mu-opioid receptors and compromised by concomitant activation of opioid receptor-like receptors.

    PubMed

    Lutfy, Kabirullah; Eitan, Shoshana; Bryant, Camron D; Yang, Yu C; Saliminejad, Nazli; Walwyn, Wendy; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Takeshima, Hiroshi; Carroll, F Ivy; Maidment, Nigel T; Evans, Christopher J

    2003-11-12

    Buprenorphine is a mixed opioid receptor agonist-antagonist used clinically for maintenance therapy in opiate addicts and pain management. Dose-response curves for buprenorphine-induced antinociception display ceiling effects or are bell shaped, which have been attributed to the partial agonist activity of buprenorphine at opioid receptors. Recently, buprenorphine has been shown to activate opioid receptor-like (ORL-1) receptors, also known as OP4 receptors. Here we demonstrate that buprenorphine, but not morphine, activates mitogen-activated protein kinase and Akt via ORL-1 receptors. Because the ORL-1 receptor agonist orphanin FQ/nociceptin blocks opioid-induced antinociception, we tested the hypothesis that buprenorphine-induced antinociception might be compromised by concomitant activation of ORL-1 receptors. In support of this hypothesis, the antinociceptive effect of buprenorphine, but not morphine, was markedly enhanced in mice lacking ORL-1 receptors using the tail-flick assay. Additional support for a modulatory role for ORL-1 receptors in buprenorphine-induced antinociception was that coadministration of J-113397, an ORL-1 receptor antagonist, enhanced the antinociceptive efficacy of buprenorphine in wild-type mice but not in mice lacking ORL-1 receptors. The ORL-1 antagonist also eliminated the bell-shaped dose-response curve for buprenorphine-induced antinociception in wild-type mice. Although buprenorphine has been shown to interact with multiple opioid receptors, mice lacking micro-opioid receptors failed to exhibit antinociception after buprenorphine administration. Our results indicate that the antinociceptive effect of buprenorphine in mice is micro-opioid receptor-mediated yet severely compromised by concomitant activation of ORL-1 receptors.

  9. Morphine Protects against Methylmercury Intoxication: A Role for Opioid Receptors in Oxidative Stress?

    PubMed Central

    Costa-Malaquias, Allan; Almeida, Mauro B.; Souza Monteiro, José R.; Macchi, Barbarella de Matos; do Nascimento, José Luiz M.; Crespo-Lopez, María Elena

    2014-01-01

    Mercury is an extremely dangerous environmental contaminant responsible for episodes of human intoxication throughout the world. Methylmercury, the most toxic compound of this metal, mainly targets the central nervous system, accumulating preferentially in cells of glial origin and causing oxidative stress. Despite studies demonstrating the current exposure of human populations, the consequences of mercury intoxication and concomitant use of drugs targeting the central nervous system (especially drugs used in long-term treatments, such as analgesics) are completely unknown. Morphine is a major option for pain management; its global consumption more than quadrupled in the last decade. Controversially, morphine has been proposed to function in oxidative stress independent of the activation of the opioid receptors. In this work, a therapeutic concentration of morphine partially protected the cellular viability of cells from a C6 glioma cell line exposed to methylmercury. Morphine treatment also reduced lipid peroxidation and totally prevented increases in nitrite levels in those cells. A mechanistic study revealed no alteration in sulfhydryl groups or direct scavenging at this opioid concentration. Interestingly, the opioid antagonist naloxone completely eliminated the protective effect of morphine against methylmercury intoxication, pointing to opioid receptors as the major contributor to this action. Taken together, the experiments in the current study provide the first demonstration that a therapeutic concentration of morphine is able to reduce methylmercury-induced oxidative damage and cell death by activating the opioid receptors. Thus, these receptors may be a promising pharmacological target for modulating the deleterious effects of mercury intoxication. Although additional studies are necessary, our results support the clinical safety of using this opioid in methylmercury-intoxicated patients, suggesting that normal analgesic doses could confer an additional

  10. Selective Glucocorticoid Receptor modulators.

    PubMed

    De Bosscher, Karolien

    2010-05-31

    The ancient two-faced Roman god Janus is often used as a metaphor to describe the characteristics of the Glucocorticoid Receptor (NR3C1), which exhibits both a beneficial side, that serves to halt inflammation, and a detrimental side responsible for undesirable effects. However, recent developments suggest that the Glucocorticoid Receptor has many more faces with the potential to express a range of different functionalities, depending on factors that include the tissue type, ligand type, receptor variants, cofactor surroundings and target gene promoters. This behavior of the receptor has made the development of safer ligands, that trigger the expression program of only a desirable subset of genes, a real challenge. Thus more knowledge-based fundamental research is needed to ensure the design and development of selective Glucocorticoid Receptor modulators capable of reaching the clinic. Recent advances in the characterization of novel selective Glucocorticoid Receptor modulators, specifically in the context of anti-inflammatory strategies, will be described in this review.

  11. Panicolytic-like effect of tramadol is mediated by opioid receptors in the dorsal periaqueductal grey.

    PubMed

    Fiaes, Gislaine Cardoso de Souza; Roncon, Camila Marroni; Sestile, Caio Cesar; Maraschin, Jhonatan Christian; Souza, Rodolfo Luis Silva; Porcu, Mauro; Audi, Elisabeth Aparecida

    2017-05-30

    Tramadol is a synthetic opioid prescribed for the treatment of moderate to severe pain, acting as agonist of μ-opioid receptors and serotonin (5-HT) and noradrenaline (NE) reuptake inhibitor. This study evaluated the effects of tramadol in rats submitted to the elevated T-maze (ETM), an animal model that evaluates behavioural parameters such as anxiety and panic. Male Wistar rats were intraperitoneally (i.p.) treated acutely with tramadol (16 and 32mg/kg) and were submitted to the ETM. Tramadol (32mg/kg) promoted a panicolytic-like effect. Considering that dorsal periaqueductal grey (dPAG) is the main brain structure related to the pathophysiology of panic disorder (PD), this study also evaluated the participation of 5-HT and opioid receptors located in the dPAG in the panicolytic-like effect of tramadol. Seven days after stereotaxic surgery for implantation of a cannula in the dPAG, the animals were submitted to the test. To assess the involvement of 5-HT1A receptors on the effect of tramadol, we combined the 5-HT1A receptor antagonist, WAY100635 (0.37nmol), microinjected intra-dPAG, 10min prior to the administration of tramadol (32mg/kg, i.p.). WAY100635 did not block the panicolytic-like effect of tramadol. We also associated the non-selective opioid receptor antagonist, naloxone, systemically (1mg/kg, i.p.) or intra-dPAG (0.5nmol) administered 10min prior to tramadol (32mg/kg, i.p.). Naloxone blocked the panicolytic-like effect of tramadol in both routes of administrations, showing that tramadol modulates acute panic defensive behaviours through its interaction with opioid receptors located in the dPAG. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. The critical role of spinal 5-HT7 receptors in opioid and non-opioid type stress-induced analgesia.

    PubMed

    Yesilyurt, Ozgur; Seyrek, Melik; Tasdemir, Serdar; Kahraman, Serdar; Deveci, Mehmet Salih; Karakus, Emre; Halici, Zekai; Dogrul, Ahmet

    2015-09-05

    The opioid and non-opioid types of stress-induced analgesia have been well defined. One of the non-opioid type involve the endocannabinoid system. We previously reported that the spinal serotonin 7 receptor (5-HT7) blockers inhibit both morphine and cannabinoid-induced analgesia, thus we hypothesized that descending serotonergic pathways-spinal 5-HT7 receptor loop might contribute to stress-induced analgesia. Stress-induced analgesia was induced with warm (32°C) or cold (20°C) water swim stress in male Balb-C mice. The effects of intrathecal injection of a selective 5-HT7 receptor antagonist, SB 269970, of the denervation of serotonergic neurons by intrathecal administration of 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine (5,7-DHT) and of lesions of the dorsolateral funiculus on opioid and non-opioid type stress-induced analgesia were evaluated with the tail-flick and hot plate tests. The expression of 5-HT7 receptors mRNA in the dorsal lumbar region of spinal cord were analyzed by RT-PCR following spinal serotonin depletion or dorsolateral funiculus lesion. The effects of the selective 5-HT7 receptor agonists LP 44 and AS 19 were tested on nociception. Intrathecal SB 269970 blocked both opioid and non-opioid type stress-induced analgesia. Dorsolateral funiculus lesion or denervation of the spinal serotonergic neurons resulted in a marked decrease in 5-HT7 receptor expression in the dorsal lumbar spinal cord, accompanied by inhibition of opioid and non-opioid type stress-induced analgesia. However, the systemic or intrathecal LP 44 and AS 19 alone did not produce analgesia in unstressed mice. These results indicate that descending serotonergic pathways and the spinal 5-HT7 receptor loop play a crucial role in mediating both opioid and non-opioid type stress-induced analgesia.

  13. Regulation of μ and δ opioid receptor functions: involvement of cyclin-dependent kinase 5

    PubMed Central

    Beaudry, H; Mercier-Blais, A-A; Delaygue, C; Lavoie, C; Parent, J-L; Neugebauer, W; Gendron, L

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose Phosphorylation of δ opioid receptors (DOP receptors) by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (CDK5) was shown to regulate the trafficking of this receptor. Therefore, we aimed to determine the role of CDK5 in regulating DOP receptors in rats treated with morphine or with complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA). As μ (MOP) and DOP receptors are known to be co-regulated, we also sought to determine if CDK5-mediated regulation of DOP receptors also affects MOP receptor functions. Experimental Approach The role of CDK5 in regulating opioid receptors in CFA- and morphine-treated rats was studied using roscovitine as a CDK inhibitor and a cell-penetrant peptide mimicking the second intracellular loop of DOP receptors (C11-DOPri2). Opioid receptor functions were assessed in vivo in a series of behavioural experiments and correlated by measuring ERK1/2 activity in dorsal root ganglia homogenates. Key Results Chronic roscovitine treatment reduced the antinociceptive and antihyperalgesic effects of deltorphin II (Dlt II) in morphine- and CFA-treated rats respectively. Repeated administrations of C11-DOPri2 also robustly decreased Dlt II-induced analgesia. Interestingly, DAMGO-induced analgesia was significantly increased by roscovitine and C11-DOPri2. Concomitantly, in roscovitine-treated rats the Dlt II-induced ERK1/2 activation was decreased, whereas the DAMGO-induced ERK1/2 activation was increased. An acute roscovitine treatment had no effect on Dlt II- or DAMGO-induced analgesia. Conclusions and Implications Together, our results demonstrate that CDK5 is a key player in the regulation of DOP receptors in morphine- and CFA-treated rats and that the regulation of DOP receptors by CDK5 is sufficient to modulate MOP receptor functions through an indirect process. PMID:25598508

  14. Purification and Functional Reconstitution of Monomeric μ-Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Kuszak, Adam J.; Pitchiaya, Sethuramasundaram; Anand, Jessica P.; Mosberg, Henry I.; Walter, Nils G.; Sunahara, Roger K.

    2009-01-01

    Despite extensive characterization of the μ-opioid receptor (MOR), the biochemical properties of the isolated receptor remain unclear. In light of recent reports, we proposed that the monomeric form of MOR can activate G proteins and be subject to allosteric regulation. A μ-opioid receptor fused to yellow fluorescent protein (YMOR) was constructed and expressed in insect cells. YMOR binds ligands with high affinity, displays agonist-stimulated [35S]guanosine 5′-(γ-thio)triphosphate binding to Gαi, and is allosterically regulated by coupled Gi protein heterotrimer both in insect cell membranes and as purified protein reconstituted into a phospholipid bilayer in the form of high density lipoprotein particles. Single-particle imaging of fluorescently labeled receptor indicates that the reconstituted YMOR is monomeric. Moreover, single-molecule imaging of a Cy3-labeled agonist, [Lys7, Cys8]dermorphin, illustrates a novel method for studying G protein-coupled receptor-ligand binding and suggests that one molecule of agonist binds per monomeric YMOR. Together these data support the notion that oligomerization of the μ-opioid receptor is not required for agonist and antagonist binding and that the monomeric receptor is the minimal functional unit in regard to G protein activation and strong allosteric regulation of agonist binding by G proteins. PMID:19542234

  15. Antitussive activity of Withania somnifera and opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Nosálová, Gabriela; Sivová, Veronika; Ray, Bimalendu; Fraňová, Soňa; Ondrejka, Igor; Flešková, Dana

    2015-01-01

    Arabinogalactan is a polysaccharide isolated from the roots of the medicinal plant Withania somnifera L. It contains 65% arabinose and 18% galactose. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the antitussive activity of arabinogalactan in conscious, healthy adult guinea pigs and the role of the opioid pathway in the antitussive action. A polysaccharide extract was given orally in a dose of 50 mg/kg. Cough was induced by an aerosol of citric acid in a concentration 0.3 mol/L, generated by a jet nebulizer into a plethysmographic chamber. The intensity of cough response was defined as the number of cough efforts counted during a 3-min exposure to the aerosol. The major finding was that arabinogalactan clearly suppressed the cough reflex; the suppression was comparable with that of codeine that was taken as a reference drug. The involvement of the opioid system was tested with the use of a blood-brain barrier penetrable, naloxone hydrochloride, and non-penetrable, naloxone methiodide, to distinguish between the central and peripheral mu-opioid receptor pathways. Both opioid antagonists acted to reverse the arabinogalactan-induced cough suppression; the reversion was total over time with the latter antagonist. We failed to confirm the presence of a bronchodilating effect of the polysaccharide, which could be involved in its antitussive action. We conclude that the polysaccharide arabinogalactan from Withania somnifera has a distinct antitussive activity consisting of cough suppression and that this action involves the mu-opioid receptor pathways.

  16. Heteromers of μ-δ opioid receptors: new pharmacology and novel therapeutic possibilities

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Wakako; Gomes, Ivone; Devi, Lakshmi A

    2015-01-01

    Several studies suggest that heteromerization between μ (MOP) and δ (DOP) opioid receptors modulates the signalling properties of the individual receptors. For example, whereas activation of MOP receptors by an agonist induces G protein-mediated signalling, the same agonist induces β-arrestin-mediated signalling in the context of the MOP-DOP receptor heteromer. Moreover, heteromer-mediated signalling is allosterically modulated by a combination of MOP and DOP receptor ligands. This has implications in analgesia given that morphine-induced antinociception can be potentiated by DOP receptor ligands. Recently reagents selectively targeting the MOP-DOP receptor heteromer such as bivalent ligands, antibodies or membrane permeable peptides have been generated; these reagents are enabling studies to elucidate the contribution of endogenously expressed heteromers to analgesia as well as to the development of side-effects associated with chronic opioid use. Recent advances in drug screening technology have led to the identification of a MOP-DOP receptor heteromer-biased agonist that activates both G protein-mediated and β-arrestin-mediated signalling. Moreover, this heteromer-biased agonist exhibits potent antinociceptive activity but with reduced side-effects, suggesting that ligands targeting the MOP-DOP receptor heteromer form a basis for the development of novel therapeutics for the treatment of pain. In this review, we summarize findings regarding the biological and functional characteristics of the MOP-DOP receptor heteromer and the in vitro and in vivo properties of heteromer-selective ligands. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24571499

  17. A mu-delta opioid receptor brain atlas reveals neuronal co-occurrence in subcortical networks.

    PubMed

    Erbs, Eric; Faget, Lauren; Scherrer, Gregory; Matifas, Audrey; Filliol, Dominique; Vonesch, Jean-Luc; Koch, Marc; Kessler, Pascal; Hentsch, Didier; Birling, Marie-Christine; Koutsourakis, Manoussos; Vasseur, Laurent; Veinante, Pierre; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Massotte, Dominique

    2015-03-01

    Opioid receptors are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) that modulate brain function at all levels of neural integration, including autonomic, sensory, emotional and cognitive processing. Mu (MOR) and delta (DOR) opioid receptors functionally interact in vivo, but whether interactions occur at circuitry, cellular or molecular levels remains unsolved. To challenge the hypothesis of MOR/DOR heteromerization in the brain, we generated redMOR/greenDOR double knock-in mice and report dual receptor mapping throughout the nervous system. Data are organized as an interactive database offering an opioid receptor atlas with concomitant MOR/DOR visualization at subcellular resolution, accessible online. We also provide co-immunoprecipitation-based evidence for receptor heteromerization in these mice. In the forebrain, MOR and DOR are mainly detected in separate neurons, suggesting system-level interactions in high-order processing. In contrast, neuronal co-localization is detected in subcortical networks essential for survival involved in eating and sexual behaviors or perception and response to aversive stimuli. In addition, potential MOR/DOR intracellular interactions within the nociceptive pathway offer novel therapeutic perspectives.

  18. It's MORe exciting than mu: crosstalk between mu opioid receptors and glutamatergic transmission in the mesolimbic dopamine system.

    PubMed

    Chartoff, Elena H; Connery, Hilary S

    2014-01-01

    Opioids selective for the G protein-coupled mu opioid receptor (MOR) produce potent analgesia and euphoria. Heroin, a synthetic opioid, is considered one of the most addictive substances, and the recent exponential rise in opioid addiction and overdose deaths has made treatment development a national public health priority. Existing medications (methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone), when combined with psychosocial therapies, have proven efficacy in reducing aspects of opioid addiction. Unfortunately, these medications have critical limitations including those associated with opioid agonist therapies (e.g., sustained physiological dependence and opioid withdrawal leading to high relapse rates upon discontinuation), non-adherence to daily dosing, and non-renewal of monthly injection with extended-release naltrexone. Furthermore, current medications fail to ameliorate key aspects of addiction such as powerful conditioned associations that trigger relapse (e.g., cues, stress, the drug itself). Thus, there is a need for developing novel treatments that target neural processes corrupted with chronic opioid use. This requires a basic understanding of molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying effects of opioids on synaptic transmission and plasticity within reward-related neural circuits. The focus of this review is to discuss how crosstalk between MOR-associated G protein signaling and glutamatergic neurotransmission leads to immediate and long-term effects on emotional states (e.g., euphoria, depression) and motivated behavior (e.g., drug-seeking, relapse). Our goal is to integrate findings on how opioids modulate synaptic release of glutamate and postsynaptic transmission via α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in the nucleus accumbens and ventral tegmental area with the clinical (neurobehavioral) progression of opioid dependence, as well as to identify gaps in knowledge that can be addressed in future studies.

  19. µ-opioid Receptor Availability in the Amygdala is Associated with Smoking for Negative Affect Relief

    PubMed Central

    Falcone, Mary; Gold, Allison B.; Wileyto, E. Paul; Ray, Riju; Ruparel, Kosha; Newberg, Andrew; Dubroff, Jacob; Logan, Jean; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Blendy, Julie A.; Lerman, Caryn

    2013-01-01

    Rationale The perception that smoking relieves negative affect contributes to smoking persistence. Endogenous opioid neurotransmission, and the µ-opioid receptor (MOR) in particular, plays a role in affective regulation and is modulated by nicotine. Objectives We examined the relationship of µ-opioid receptor binding availability in the amygdala to the motivation to smoke for negative affect relief and to the acute effects of smoking on affective responses. Methods Twenty-two smokers were scanned on two separate occasions after overnight abstinence using [11C]carfentanil positron emission tomography imaging: after smoking a nicotine-containing cigarette and after smoking a denicotinized cigarette. Self-reports of smoking motives were collected at baseline, and measures of positive and negative affect were collected pre- and post- cigarette smoking. Results Higher MOR availability in the amygdala was associated with motivation to smoke to relieve negative affect. However, MOR availability was unrelated to changes in affect after smoking either cigarette. Conclusions Increased MOR availability in amygdala may underlie the motivation to smoke for negative affective relief. These results are consistent with previous data highlighting the role of µ-opioid receptor neurotransmission in smoking behavior. PMID:22389047

  20. Targeting peripheral opioid receptors to promote analgesic and anti-inflammatory actions

    PubMed Central

    Iwaszkiewicz, Katerina S.; Schneider, Jennifer J.; Hua, Susan

    2013-01-01

    Mechanisms of endogenous pain control are significant. Increasing studies have clearly produced evidence for the clinical usefulness of opioids in peripheral analgesia. The immune system uses mechanisms of cell migration not only to fight pathogens but also to control pain and inflammation within injured tissue. It has been demonstrated that peripheral inflammatory pain can be effectively controlled by an interaction of immune cell-derived opioid peptides with opioid receptors on peripheral sensory nerve terminals. Experimental and clinical studies have clearly shown that activation of peripheral opioid receptors with exogenous opioid agonists and endogenous opioid peptides are able to produce significant analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects, without central opioid mediated side effects (e.g., respiratory depression, sedation, tolerance, dependence). This article will focus on the role of opioids in peripheral inflammatory conditions and the clinical implications of targeting peripheral opioid receptors. PMID:24167491

  1. Lobeline, a potential pharmacotherapy for drug addiction, binds to mu opioid receptors and diminishes the effects of opioid receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Miller, Dennis K; Lever, John R; Rodvelt, Kelli R; Baskett, James A; Will, Matthew J; Kracke, George R

    2007-07-10

    Lobeline diminishes the behavioral and neurochemical effects of nicotine and amphetamines, and is considered a potential pharmacotherapy for drug abuse and addiction. Lobeline has high affinity for nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and inhibits the function of vesicular monoamine and dopamine transporters. The present study investigated the less-explored interaction of lobeline and the endogenous opioid system. In guinea pig brain homogenates, lobeline displaced (K(i)=0.74 microM) the binding of [(3)H]DAMGO [(D-Ala(2), N-ME-Phe(4), Gly(5)-ol)-enkephalin]. In a functional assay system comprised of MOR-1 mu opioid receptors and GIRK2 potassium channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes, lobeline had no effect on the resting current, but maximally inhibited (IC(50)=1.1 microM) morphine- and DAMGO-activated potassium current in a concentration-dependent manner. In a second functional assay, lobeline-evoked [(3)H]overflow from rat striatal slices preloaded with [(3)H]dopamine was not blocked by naltrexone. Importantly, concentrations of lobeline (0.1-0.3 microM) that did not have intrinsic activity attenuated ( approximately 50%) morphine-evoked [(3)H]overflow. Overall, the results suggest that lobeline functions as a mu opioid receptor antagonist. The ability of lobeline to block psychostimulant effects may be mediated by opioid receptor antagonism, and lobeline could be investigated as a treatment for opiate addiction.

  2. Peptidases prevent μ-opioid receptor internalization in dorsal horn neurons by endogenously released opioids

    PubMed Central

    Song, Bingbing; Marvizón, Juan Carlos G.

    2008-01-01

    To evaluate the effect of peptidases on μ-opioid receptor (MOR) activation by endogenous opioids, we measured MOR-1 internalization in rat spinal cord slices. A mixture of inhibitors of aminopeptidases (amastatin), dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase (captopril), and neutral endopeptidase (phosphoramidon) dramatically increased the potencies of Leu-enkephalin and dynorphin A to produce MOR-1 internalization, and also enhanced the effects of Met-enkephalin and α-neoendorphin, but not endomorphins or β-endorphin. Omission of any one inhibitor abolished Leu-enkephalin-induced internalization, indicating that all three peptidases degraded enkephalins. Amastatin preserved dynorphin A-induced internalization, and phosphoramidon, but not captopril, increased this effect, indicating that the effect of dynorphin A was prevented by aminopeptidases and neutral endopeptidase. Veratridine (30 μM) or 50 mM KCl produced MOR-1 internalization in the presence of peptidase inhibitors, but little or no internalization in their absence. These effects were attributed to opioid release, because they were abolished by the selective MOR antagonist CTAP and were Ca2+-dependent. The effect of veratridine was protected by phosphoramidon plus amastatin or captopril, but not by amastatin plus captopril or by phosphoramidon alone, indicating that released opioids are mainly cleaved by neutral endopeptidase, with a lesser involvement of aminopeptidases and dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase. Therefore, since the potencies of endomorphin-1 and -2 to elicit internalization were unaffected by peptidase inhibitors, the opioids released by veratridine were not endomorphins. Confocal microscopy revealed that MOR-1-expressing neurons were in close proximity to terminals containing opioids with enkephalin-like sequences. These findings indicate that peptidases prevent the activation of extrasynaptic MOR-1 in dorsal horn neurons. PMID:12629189

  3. Interacting Cannabinoid and Opioid Receptors in the Nucleus Accumbens Core Control Adolescent Social Play

    PubMed Central

    Manduca, Antonia; Lassalle, Olivier; Sepers, Marja; Campolongo, Patrizia; Cuomo, Vincenzo; Marsicano, Giovanni; Kieffer, Brigitte; Vanderschuren, Louk J. M. J; Trezza, Viviana; Manzoni, Olivier J. J.

    2016-01-01

    Social play behavior is a highly rewarding, developmentally important form of social interaction in young mammals. However, its neurobiological underpinnings remain incompletely understood. Previous work has suggested that opioid and endocannabinoid neurotransmission interact in the modulation of social play. Therefore, we combined behavioral, pharmacological, electrophysiological, and genetic approaches to elucidate the role of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in social play, and how cannabinoid and opioid neurotransmission interact to control social behavior in adolescent rodents. Systemic administration of the 2-AG hydrolysis inhibitor JZL184 or the opioid receptor agonist morphine increased social play behavior in adolescent rats. These effects were blocked by systemic pretreatment with either CB1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1R) or mu-opioid receptor (MOR) antagonists. The social play-enhancing effects of systemic morphine or JZL184 treatment were also prevented by direct infusion of the CB1R antagonist SR141716 and the MOR antagonist naloxone into the nucleus accumbens core (NAcC). Searching for synaptic correlates of these effects in adolescent NAcC excitatory synapses, we observed that CB1R antagonism blocked the effect of the MOR agonist DAMGO and, conversely, that naloxone reduced the effect of a cannabinoid agonist. These results were recapitulated in mice, and completely abolished in CB1R and MOR knockout mice, suggesting that the functional interaction between CB1R and MOR in the NAcC in the modulation of social behavior is widespread in rodents. The data shed new light on the mechanism by which endocannabinoid lipids and opioid peptides interact to orchestrate rodent socioemotional behaviors. PMID:27899885

  4. Interacting Cannabinoid and Opioid Receptors in the Nucleus Accumbens Core Control Adolescent Social Play.

    PubMed

    Manduca, Antonia; Lassalle, Olivier; Sepers, Marja; Campolongo, Patrizia; Cuomo, Vincenzo; Marsicano, Giovanni; Kieffer, Brigitte; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J; Trezza, Viviana; Manzoni, Olivier J J

    2016-01-01

    Social play behavior is a highly rewarding, developmentally important form of social interaction in young mammals. However, its neurobiological underpinnings remain incompletely understood. Previous work has suggested that opioid and endocannabinoid neurotransmission interact in the modulation of social play. Therefore, we combined behavioral, pharmacological, electrophysiological, and genetic approaches to elucidate the role of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) in social play, and how cannabinoid and opioid neurotransmission interact to control social behavior in adolescent rodents. Systemic administration of the 2-AG hydrolysis inhibitor JZL184 or the opioid receptor agonist morphine increased social play behavior in adolescent rats. These effects were blocked by systemic pretreatment with either CB1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1R) or mu-opioid receptor (MOR) antagonists. The social play-enhancing effects of systemic morphine or JZL184 treatment were also prevented by direct infusion of the CB1R antagonist SR141716 and the MOR antagonist naloxone into the nucleus accumbens core (NAcC). Searching for synaptic correlates of these effects in adolescent NAcC excitatory synapses, we observed that CB1R antagonism blocked the effect of the MOR agonist DAMGO and, conversely, that naloxone reduced the effect of a cannabinoid agonist. These results were recapitulated in mice, and completely abolished in CB1R and MOR knockout mice, suggesting that the functional interaction between CB1R and MOR in the NAcC in the modulation of social behavior is widespread in rodents. The data shed new light on the mechanism by which endocannabinoid lipids and opioid peptides interact to orchestrate rodent socioemotional behaviors.

  5. The opioid receptors of the rat periaqueductal gray

    SciTech Connect

    Fedynyshyn, J.P.

    1989-01-01

    The opioid binding characteristics of the rat (PAG) and the signal transduction mechanisms of the opioid receptors were examined with in vitro radioligand binding, GTPase, adenylyl cyclase, and inositol phosphate assays. The nonselective ligand {sup 3}H-ethylketocyclazocine (EKC), the {mu} and {delta} selective ligand {sup 3}H-(D-Ala{sup 2}, D-Leu{sup 5}) enkephalin (DADLE), the {mu} selective ligand {sup 3}H-(D-Ala{sup 2}, N-methyl Phe{sup 4}, Glyol{sup 5}) enkephalin (DAGO), and the {delta} selective ligand {sup 3}H-(D-Pen{sup 2}, D-Pen{sup 5}) enkephalin (DPDPE) were separately used as tracer ligands to label opioid binding sites in rat PAG enriched P{sub 2} membrane in competition with unlabeled DADLE, DAGO, DPDPE, or the {kappa} selective ligand trans-3,4-dichloro-N-(2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)cyclohexyl)benzeneacetamide, methane sulfonate, hydrate (U50, 488H). Only {mu} selective high affinity opioid binding was observed. No high affinity {delta} or {kappa} selective binding was detected. {sup 3}H-DAGO was used as a tracer ligand to label {mu} selective high affinity opioid binding sites in PAG enriched P{sub 2} membrane in competition with unlabeled {beta}-endorphin, dynorphin A (1-17), BAM-18, methionine enkephalin, dynorphin A (1-8), and leucine enkephalin. Of these endogenous opioid peptides only those with previously reported high affinity {mu} type opioid binding activity competed with {sup 3}H-DAGO for binding sites in rat PAG enriched P{sub 2} membrane with affinities similar to that of unlabeled DAGO.

  6. In vivo neuronal co-expression of mu and delta opioid receptors uncovers new therapeutic perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Erbs, Eric; Faget, Lauren; Veinante, Pierre; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Massotte, Dominique

    2015-01-01

    Opioid receptors belong to the G protein coupled receptor family. They modulate brain function at all levels of neural integration and therefore impact on autonomous, sensory, emotional and cognitive processing. In vivo functional interaction between mu and delta opioid receptors are known to take place though it is still debated whether interactions occur at circuitry, cellular or molecular level. Also, the notion of receptor crosstalk via mu-delta heteromers is well documented in vitro but in vivo evidence remains scarce. To identify neurons in which receptor interactions could take place, we designed a unique double mutant knock-in mouse line that expresses functional red-fluorescent mu receptors and green-fluorescent delta receptors. We mapped mu and delta receptor distribution and co-localization throughout the nervous system and created the first interactive brain atlas with concomitant mu-delta visualization at subcellular resolution (http://mordor.ics-mci.fr/). Mu and delta receptors co-localize in neurons from subcortical networks but are mainly detected in separate neurons in the forebrain. Also, co-immunoprecipitation experiments indicated physical proximity in the hippocampus, a prerequisite to mu-delta heteromerization. Altogether, data suggest that mu-delta functional interactions take place at systems level for high-order emotional and cognitive processing whereas mu-delta may interact at cellular level in brain networks essential for survival, which has potential implications for innovative drug design in pain control, drug addiction and eating disorders. PMID:25938125

  7. In vivo neuronal co-expression of mu and delta opioid receptors uncovers new therapeutic perspectives.

    PubMed

    Erbs, Eric; Faget, Lauren; Veinante, Pierre; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Massotte, Dominique

    2014-09-01

    Opioid receptors belong to the G protein coupled receptor family. They modulate brain function at all levels of neural integration and therefore impact on autonomous, sensory, emotional and cognitive processing. In vivo functional interaction between mu and delta opioid receptors are known to take place though it is still debated whether interactions occur at circuitry, cellular or molecular level. Also, the notion of receptor crosstalk via mu-delta heteromers is well documented in vitro but in vivo evidence remains scarce. To identify neurons in which receptor interactions could take place, we designed a unique double mutant knock-in mouse line that expresses functional red-fluorescent mu receptors and green-fluorescent delta receptors. We mapped mu and delta receptor distribution and co-localization throughout the nervous system and created the first interactive brain atlas with concomitant mu-delta visualization at subcellular resolution (http://mordor.ics-mci.fr/). Mu and delta receptors co-localize in neurons from subcortical networks but are mainly detected in separate neurons in the forebrain. Also, co-immunoprecipitation experiments indicated physical proximity in the hippocampus, a prerequisite to mu-delta heteromerization. Altogether, data suggest that mu-delta functional interactions take place at systems level for high-order emotional and cognitive processing whereas mu-delta may interact at cellular level in brain networks essential for survival, which has potential implications for innovative drug design in pain control, drug addiction and eating disorders.

  8. Antinociceptive role of oxytocin in the nucleus raphe magnus of rats, an involvement of mu-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jing-Wen; Lundeberg, Thomas; Yu, Long-Chuan

    2003-10-15

    Recent studies showed that oxytocin plays an important role in nociceptive modulation in the central nervous system. The present study was undertaken to investigate the role of oxytocin in antinociception in the nucleus raphe magnus (NRM) of rats and the possible interaction between oxytocin and the opioid systems. Intra-NRM injection of oxytocin induced dose-dependent increases in hindpaw withdrawal latencies (HWLs) to noxious thermal and mechanical stimulation in rats. The antinociceptive effect of oxytocin was significantly attenuated by subsequent intra-NRM injection of the oxytocin antagonist 1-deamino-2-D-Tyr-(Oet)-4-Thr-8-Orn-oxytocin. Intra-NRM injection of naloxone dose-dependently antagonized the increased HWLs induced by preceding intra-NRM injection of oxytocin, indicating an involvement of opioid receptors in oxytocin-induced antinociception in the NRM of rats. Furthermore, the antinociceptive effect of oxytocin was dose-dependently attenuated by subsequent intra-NRM injection of the mu-opioid antagonist beta-funaltrexamine (beta-FNA), but not by the kappa-opioid antagonist nor-binaltorphimine (nor-BNI) or the delta-opioid antagonist naltrindole. The results demonstrated that oxytocin plays an antinociceptive role in the NRM of rats through activating the oxytocin receptor. Moreover, mu-opioid receptors, not kappa and delta receptors, are involved in the oxytocin-induced antinociception in the NRM of rats.

  9. Functional μ-Opioid-Galanin Receptor Heteromers in the Ventral Tegmental Area

    PubMed Central

    Moreno, Estefanía; Quiroz, César; Rea, William; Cai, Ning-Sheng; Cortés, Antoni

    2017-01-01

    population of these MORs form functional heteromers with the galanin receptor subtype Gal1 (Gal1R), which modulate the activity of the VTA dopaminergic neurons. The MOR-Gal1R heteromer can explain previous results showing antagonistic galanin–opioid interactions and offers a new therapeutic target for the treatment of opioid use disorder. PMID:28007761

  10. Functional μ-Opioid-Galanin Receptor Heteromers in the Ventral Tegmental Area.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Estefanía; Quiroz, César; Rea, William; Cai, Ning-Sheng; Mallol, Josefa; Cortés, Antoni; Lluís, Carme; Canela, Enric I; Casadó, Vicent; Ferré, Sergi

    2017-02-01

    functional heteromers with the galanin receptor subtype Gal1 (Gal1R), which modulate the activity of the VTA dopaminergic neurons. The MOR-Gal1R heteromer can explain previous results showing antagonistic galanin-opioid interactions and offers a new therapeutic target for the treatment of opioid use disorder. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/371176-11$15.00/0.

  11. Mu Opioids and Their Receptors: Evolution of a Concept

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Ying-Xian

    2013-01-01

    Opiates are among the oldest medications available to manage a number of medical problems. Although pain is the current focus, early use initially focused upon the treatment of dysentery. Opium contains high concentrations of both morphine and codeine, along with thebaine, which is used in the synthesis of a number of semisynthetic opioid analgesics. Thus, it is not surprising that new agents were initially based upon the morphine scaffold. The concept of multiple opioid receptors was first suggested almost 50 years ago (Martin, 1967), opening the possibility of new classes of drugs, but the morphine-like agents have remained the mainstay in the medical management of pain. Termed mu, our understanding of these morphine-like agents and their receptors has undergone an evolution in thinking over the past 35 years. Early pharmacological studies identified three major classes of receptors, helped by the discovery of endogenous opioid peptides and receptor subtypes—primarily through the synthesis of novel agents. These chemical biologic approaches were then eclipsed by the molecular biology revolution, which now reveals a complexity of the morphine-like agents and their receptors that had not been previously appreciated. PMID:24076545

  12. Delta opioid receptors in brain function and diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Paul Chu Sin; Kieffer, Brigitte L.

    2013-01-01

    Evidence that the delta opioid receptor (DOR) is an attractive target for the treatment of brain disorders has strengthened in recent years. This receptor is broadly expressed in the brain, binds endogenous opioid peptides, and shows as functional profile highly distinct from those of mu and kappa opioid receptors. Our knowledge of DOR function has enormously progressed from in vivo studies using pharmacological tools and genetic approaches. The important role of this receptor in reducing chronic pain has been extensively overviewed; therefore this review focuses on facets of delta receptor activity relevant to psychiatric and other neurological disorders. Beneficial effects of DOR agonists are now well established in the context of emotional responses and mood disorders. DOR activation also regulates drug reward, inhibitory controls and learning processes, but whether delta compounds may represent useful drugs in the treatment of drug abuse remains open. Epileptogenic and locomotor-stimulating effects of delta agonists appear drug-dependent, and the possibility of biased agonism at DOR for these effects is worthwhile further investigations to increase benefit/risk ratio of delta therapies. Neuroprotective effects of DOR activity represent a forthcoming research area. Future developments in DOR research will benefit from in-depth investigations of DOR function at cellular and circuit levels. PMID:23764370

  13. Irradiation exposure modulates central opioid functions

    SciTech Connect

    Dougherty, P.M.; Dafny, N.

    1987-11-01

    Exposure to low doses of gamma irradiation results in the modification of both the antinociceptive properties of morphine and the severity of naloxone-precipitated withdrawal in morphine-dependent rats. To better define the interactions between gamma irradiation and these opiate-mediated phenomena, dose-response studies were undertaken of the effect of irradiation on morphine-induced antinociception, and on the naloxone-precipitated withdrawal syndrome of morphine-dependent rats. In addition, electrophysiologic studies were conducted in rats after irradiation exposure and morphine treatment correlating with the behavioral studies. The observations obtained demonstrated that the antinociceptive effects of morphine as well as naloxone-precipitated withdrawal were modified in a dose-dependent manner by irradiation exposure. In addition, irradiation-induced changes in the evoked responses obtained from four different brain regions demonstrated transient alterations in both baseline and morphine-treated responses that may reflect the alterations observed in the behavioral paradigms. These results suggest that the effects of irradiation on opiate activities resulted from physiologic alterations of central endogenous opioid systems due to alterations manifested within peripheral targets.

  14. Dark chocolate receptors: epicatechin-induced cardiac protection is dependent on δ-opioid receptor stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Panneerselvam, Mathivadhani; Tsutsumi, Yasuo M.; Bonds, Jacqueline A.; Horikawa, Yousuke T.; Saldana, Michelle; Dalton, Nancy D.; Head, Brian P.; Patel, Piyush M.; Roth, David M.

    2010-01-01

    Epicatechin, a flavonoid, is a well-known antioxidant linked to a variety of protective effects in both humans and animals. In particular, its role in protection against cardiovascular disease has been demonstrated by epidemiologic studies. Low-dose epicatechin, which does not have significant antioxidant activity, is also protective; however, the mechanism by which low-dose epicatechin induces this effect is unknown. Our laboratory tested the hypothesis that low-dose epicatechin mediates cardiac protection via opioid receptor activation. C57BL/6 mice were randomly assigned to 1 of 10 groups: control, epicatechin, naloxone (nonselective opioid receptor antagonist), epicatechin + naloxone, naltrindole (δ-specific opioid receptor antagonist), epicatechin + naltrindole, norbinaltorphimine (nor-BNI, κ-specific opioid receptor antagonist), epicatechin + nor-BNI, 5-hydroxydecanoic acid [5-HD, ATP-sensitive potassium channel antagonist], and epicatechin + 5-HD. Epicatechin (1 mg/kg) or other inhibitors (5 mg/kg) were administered by oral gavage or intraperitoneal injection, respectively, daily for 10 days. Mice were subjected to 30 min coronary artery occlusion followed by 2 h of reperfusion, and infarct size was determined via planimetry. Whole heart homogenates were assayed for downstream opioid receptor signaling targets. Infarct size was significantly reduced in epicatechin- and epicatechin + nor-BNI-treated mice compared with control mice. This protection was blocked by naloxone, naltrindole, and 5-HD. Epicatechin and epicatechin + nor-BNI increased the phosphorylation of Src, Akt, and IκBα, while simultaneously decreasing the expression of c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase and caspase-activated DNase. All signaling effects are consistent with opioid receptor stimulation and subsequent cardiac protection. Naloxone, naltrindole, and 5-HD attenuated these effects. In conclusion, epicatechin acts via opioid receptors and more specifically through the δ-opioid receptor to

  15. Biotinylated human. beta. -endorphins as probes for the opioid receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Hochhaus, G.; Gibson, B.W.; Sadee, W.

    1988-01-05

    The reaction of human ..beta..-endorphin and biotinyl N-hydroxysuccinimide with or without spacer arm, afforded a series of products that were separated by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Liquid secondary ion mass spectrometry of the biotinylated products and their tryptic digests produced abundant protonated molecular ions (MH/sup +/), which specified the number and location of biotinylation. Between 1 and 4 biotinyl residues were incorporated per human ..beta..-endorphin molecule, at Lys-9, -19, -24, -28, and -29, but not at the amino-terminal Try-1. Three HPLC fractions were isolated for receptor binding studies monobiotinylation of Lys-9, Lys-19, and a mixture of Lys-24, Lys-28, and Lys-29 derivatives. IC/sub 50/ values for binding to ..mu.. and delta opioid receptor sites were 3-8 times higher for monobiotinylated derivatives than for the parent human ..beta..-endorphin. Association with avidin decreased opioid receptor affinities for the C/sub 6/ spacer derivative biotinylated at position Lys-9, which is close to the (1-5) enkephalin receptor region. In contrast, avidin did not affect or even increased apparent affinities to ..mu.. and delta sites for derivatives biotinylated at the ..cap alpha..-helical part of the molecule (Lys-19, -24, -28, and -29). Biotinylated human ..beta..-endorphins also bound to low affinity nonopioid binding sites on NG-108-15 cells; however, affinities to these sites were considerably reduced when derivatives were bound to avidin. The ability of biotinylated human ..beta..-endorphin to cross-link the ..mu.. and delta opioid receptors to avidin allows application of the biotin-avidin system as a molecular probe of the opioid receptor.

  16. Differential effects of exercise on brain opioid receptor binding and activation in rats.

    PubMed

    Arida, Ricardo Mario; Gomes da Silva, Sérgio; de Almeida, Alexandre Aparecido; Cavalheiro, Esper Abrão; Zavala-Tecuapetla, Cecilia; Brand, Serge; Rocha, Luisa

    2015-01-01

    Physical exercise stimulates the release of endogenous opioid peptides supposed to be responsible for changes in mood, anxiety, and performance. Exercise alters sensitivity to these effects that modify the efficacy at the opioid receptor. Although there is evidence that relates exercise to neuropeptide expression in the brain, the effects of exercise on opioid receptor binding and signal transduction mechanisms downstream of these receptors have not been explored. Here, we characterized the binding and G protein activation of mu opioid receptor, kappa opioid receptor or delta opioid receptor in several brain regions following acute (7 days) and chronic (30 days) exercise. As regards short- (acute) or long-term effects (chronic) of exercise, overall, higher opioid receptor binding was observed in acute-exercise animals and the opposite was found in the chronic-exercise animals. The binding of [(35) S]GTPγS under basal conditions (absence of agonists) was elevated in sensorimotor cortex and hippocampus, an effect more evident after chronic exercise. Divergence of findings was observed for mu opioid receptor, kappa opioid receptor, and delta opioid receptor receptor activation in our study. Our results support existing evidence of opioid receptor binding and G protein activation occurring differentially in brain regions in response to diverse exercise stimuli. We characterized the binding and G protein activation of mu, kappa, and delta opioid receptors in several brain regions following acute (7 days) and chronic (30 days) exercise. Higher opioid receptor binding was observed in the acute exercise animal group and opposite findings in the chronic exercise group. Higher G protein activation under basal conditions was noted in rats submitted to chronic exercise, as visible in the depicted pseudo-color autoradiograms.

  17. Involvement of peripheral mu opioid receptors in scratching behavior in mice.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Atsuki; Sugimoto, Yukio

    2010-12-15

    Pruritus is a common adverse effect of opioid treatment. However, the mechanism by which pruritus is induced by opioid administration is unclear. In this study, we examined the effects of the intradermal injection of loperamide, a peripherally restricted opioid receptor agonist, on the itch sensation. When injected intradermally into the rostral part of the back in mice, loperamide elicited scratching behavior. We also examined the effects of the selective mu opioid receptor agonist [d-Ala², N-Me-Phe⁴, Gly⁵-ol]-enkephalin acetate (DAMGO), the selective delta opioid receptor agonist [d-Pen(2,5)]-enkephalin (DPDPE), and the selective kappa opioid receptor agonist U-50488H on scratching behavior in mice in order to determine which subtype is involved in opioid-induced pruritus. Following intradermal injection into the rostral part of the back in mice, DAMGO elicited scratching behavior, while DPDPE and U-50488H did not. This suggests that peripheral mu opioid activation elicits the itch sensation. Next, we focused on the treatment of opioid-induced itch sensation without central adverse effects. Naloxone methiodide is a peripherally restricted opioid receptor antagonist. In the present study, naloxone methiodide significantly suppressed scratching behavior induced by loperamide and DAMGO. These findings suggest that mu opioid receptors play a primary role in peripheral pruritus and that naloxone methiodide may represent a possible remedy for opioid-induced itching.

  18. Non-opioid actions of opioid peptides.

    PubMed

    Wollemann, Mária; Benyhe, Sándor

    2004-06-04

    Beside the well known actions of opioid peptides on mu-, delta- and kappa-opioid receptors, increasing amount of pharmacological and biochemical evidence has recently been published about non-opioid actions of various opioid peptides. These effects are not abolished by naloxone treatments. Such non-opioid effects are observed both in nervous tissues and in the cellular elements of the immune system. Peptides exhibiting non-opioid effects include beta-endorphin, dynorphin A, nociceptin/OFQ, endomorphins, hemorphins and a number of Proenkephalin A derived peptides, such as Met-enkephalin, Met-enkephalin-Arg-Phe (MERF) and bovine adrenal medullary peptide (BAM22). Non-opioid actions are exerted through different neuronal receptors, e.g., dynorphin hyperalgesia through NMDA receptor, Met-enkephalin induced regulation of cell growth through zeta receptors, pain modulation by nociceptin through ORL-1 or NOP receptors, while BAM22 acts through sensory neuron specific G protein-coupled receptors (SNSR). We have investigated Met-enkephalin-Arg-Phe (MERF) and its analogues by the means of direct and indirect radioligand binding assays. It has been found that in addition to kappa(2) and delta-opioid receptors, MERF can act also through sigma(2)- or probably via FMRF-NH(2) receptors in rat cerebellum. A role of functionally assembling heterodimer receptors in mediating the non-conventional actions of these peptide ligands can not be excluded as well.

  19. The Effect of Opioid Receptor Blockade on the Neural Processing of Thermal Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Schoell, Eszter D.; Bingel, Ulrike; Eippert, Falk; Yacubian, Juliana; Christiansen, Kerrin; Andresen, Hilke; May, Arne; Buechel, Christian

    2010-01-01

    The endogenous opioid system represents one of the principal systems in the modulation of pain. This has been demonstrated in studies of placebo analgesia and stress-induced analgesia, where anti-nociceptive activity triggered by pain itself or by cognitive states is blocked by opioid antagonists. The aim of this study was to characterize the effect of opioid receptor blockade on the physiological processing of painful thermal stimulation in the absence of cognitive manipulation. We therefore measured BOLD (blood oxygen level dependent) signal responses and intensity ratings to non-painful and painful thermal stimuli in a double-blind, cross-over design using the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone. On the behavioral level, we observed an increase in intensity ratings under naloxone due mainly to a difference in the non-painful stimuli. On the neural level, painful thermal stimulation was associated with a negative BOLD signal within the pregenual anterior cingulate cortex, and this deactivation was abolished by naloxone. PMID:20811582

  20. The imidazoline receptors and ligands in pain modulation

    PubMed Central

    Bektas, Nurcan; Nemutlu, Dilara; Arslan, Rana

    2015-01-01

    Pain is an unpleasant experience and effects daily routine negatively. Although there are various drugs, many of them are not entirely successful in relieving pain, since pain modulation is a complex process involving numerous mediators and receptors. Therefore, it is a rational approach to identify the factors involved in the complex process and develop new agents that act on these pain producing mechanisms. In this respect, the involvement of the imidazoline receptors in pain modulation has drawn attention in recent years. In this review, it is aimed to focus on the imidazoline receptors and their ligands which contribute to the pain modulation. It is demonstrated that imidazoline-2 (I2) receptors are steady new drug targets for analgesics. Even if the mechanism of I2 receptor is not well known in the modulation of pain, it is known that it plays a role in tonic and chronic pain but not in acute phasic pain. Moreover, the I2 receptor ligands increase the analgesic effects of opioids in both acute and chronic pain and prevent the development of opioid tolerance. So, they are valuable for the chronic pain treatment and also therapeutic coadjuvants in the management of chronic pain with opiate drugs due to the attenuation of opioid tolerance and addiction. Thus, the use of the ligands which bind to the imidazoline receptors is an effective strategy for relieving pain. This educational forum exhibits the role of imidazoline receptors and ligands in pain process by utilizing experimental studies. PMID:26600633

  1. The imidazoline receptors and ligands in pain modulation.

    PubMed

    Bektas, Nurcan; Nemutlu, Dilara; Arslan, Rana

    2015-01-01

    Pain is an unpleasant experience and effects daily routine negatively. Although there are various drugs, many of them are not entirely successful in relieving pain, since pain modulation is a complex process involving numerous mediators and receptors. Therefore, it is a rational approach to identify the factors involved in the complex process and develop new agents that act on these pain producing mechanisms. In this respect, the involvement of the imidazoline receptors in pain modulation has drawn attention in recent years. In this review, it is aimed to focus on the imidazoline receptors and their ligands which contribute to the pain modulation. It is demonstrated that imidazoline-2 (I2) receptors are steady new drug targets for analgesics. Even if the mechanism of I2 receptor is not well known in the modulation of pain, it is known that it plays a role in tonic and chronic pain but not in acute phasic pain. Moreover, the I2 receptor ligands increase the analgesic effects of opioids in both acute and chronic pain and prevent the development of opioid tolerance. So, they are valuable for the chronic pain treatment and also therapeutic coadjuvants in the management of chronic pain with opiate drugs due to the attenuation of opioid tolerance and addiction. Thus, the use of the ligands which bind to the imidazoline receptors is an effective strategy for relieving pain. This educational forum exhibits the role of imidazoline receptors and ligands in pain process by utilizing experimental studies.

  2. Peripheral and central sites of action for anti-allodynic activity induced by the bifunctional opioid/NPFF receptors agonist BN-9 in inflammatory pain model.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Run; Xu, Biao; Zhang, Meng-Na; Zhang, Ting; Wang, Zi-Long; Zhao, Geng; Zhao, Guang-Hai; Li, Ning; Fang, Quan; Wang, Rui

    2017-10-15

    The activation of opioid and neuropeptide FF (NPFF) receptors plays important roles to modulate nociceptive signal in inflammatory pain states. Recently, BN-9 (Tyr-D. Ala-Gly-Phe-Gln-Pro-Gln-Arg-Phe-NH2) was pharmacologically characterized as a novel bifunctional agonist at both opioid and NPFF receptors. In the present study, the anti-allodynic activity and site(s) of action of BN-9 were assessed in a mouse model of carrageenan-induced inflammatory pain. In mice, BN-9 induced a dose-dependent anti-allodinic effect through opioid receptor at supraspinal or spinal level, and this effect was augmented by pretreatment with the NPFF receptor antagonist at the same level. In contrast, peripheral administration of BN-9 produced opioid receptor-mediated anti-allodynia, which was insensitive of the NPFF receptor antagonist. In addition, systemic BN-9 produced anti-allodynic effect via opioid receptors, independent of NPFF system. Therefore, these data indicate that central, peripheral or systemic administrations of BN-9 exert potent analgesic activities in inflammatory pain model via opioid receptor, and central effects of BN-9 are associated with NPFF system. Interestingly, systemic anti-allodynia of BN-9 was blocked by intraperitoneal administration of the opioid receptor antagonists, naloxone and naloxone methiodide, but not by intracerebroventricular injection of the peripherally acting opioid antagonist naloxone methiodide. Furthermore, BN-9-induced systemic anti-allodynia was reversed by intraplantar administration of naloxone, but not by peripheral administration of the NPFF receptor antagonist. Taken together, our data further suggest that systemic BN-9-induced anti-allodynic effect is mainly mediated by peripheral opioid receptors, independent of NPFF receptors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Ligand/kappa-Opioid Receptor Interactions: Insights from the X-Ray Crystal Structure

    PubMed Central

    Martinez-Mayorga, Karina; Byler, Kendall G.; Yongye, Austin B.; Giulianotti, Marc A.; Dooley, Colette T.; Houghten, Richard A.

    2013-01-01

    During the past five years, the three-dimensional structures of 14 different G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) have been resolved by X-ray crystallography. The most recently published structures, those of the opioid receptors (ORs), are remarkably important in pain modulation, drug addiction, and mood disorders. These structures, confirmed previously proposed key interactions conferring potency and antagonistic properties, including the well-known interaction with Asp138, conserved in all aminergic GPCRs. In addition, crystallization of the opioid receptors highlighted the potential function of the ECL2 and ICL2 loops. We have previously reported a set of potent and selective kappa opioid receptor peptide agonists, of which ff(D-nle)r-NH2 is among the most potent and selective ones. These peptides were identified from the deconvolution of a 6,250,000 tetrapeptide combinatorial library. A derivative of this set is currently the subject of a phase 2 clinical trial in the United States. In this work, we describe comparative molecular modeling studies of kappa-OR peptide agonists with the co-crystallized antagonist, JDTic, and also report structure-activity relationships of 23 tetrapeptides. The overall binding and contact interactions are sound and interactions known to favor selectivity and potency were observed. Additional modeling studies will reveal conformational changes that the kappa-OR undergoes upon binding to these peptide agonists. PMID:23792349

  4. Peripherally acting μ-opioid receptor antagonists as treatment options for constipation in noncancer pain patients on chronic opioid therapy

    PubMed Central

    Pergolizzi, Joseph V; Raffa, Robert B; Pappagallo, Marco; Fleischer, Charles; Pergolizzi, Joseph; Zampogna, Gianpietro; Duval, Elizabeth; Hishmeh, Janan; LeQuang, Jo Ann; Taylor, Robert

    2017-01-01

    Opioid-induced constipation (OIC), a prevalent and distressing side effect of opioid therapy, does not reliably respond to treatment with conventional laxatives. OIC can be a treatment-limiting adverse event. Recent advances in medications with peripherally acting μ-opioid receptor antagonists, such as methylnaltrexone, naloxegol, and alvimopan, hold promise for treating OIC and thus extending the benefits of opioid analgesia to more chronic pain patients. Peripherally acting μ-opioid receptor antagonists have been clinically tested to improve bowel symptoms without compromise to pain relief, although there are associated side effects, including abdominal pain. Other treatment options include fixed-dose combination products of oxycodone analgesic together with naloxone. PMID:28176913

  5. Identification of rat brain opioid (enkephalin) receptor by photoaffinity labeling

    SciTech Connect

    Yeung, C.W.

    1986-01-01

    A photoreactive, radioactive enkephalin derivative was prepared and purified by high performance liquid chromatography. Rat brain and spinal cord plasma membranes were incubated with this radioiodinated photoprobe and were subsequently photolysed. Autoradiography of the sodium dodecyl sulfate gel electrophoresis of the solubilized and reduced membranes showed that a protein having an apparent molecular weight of 46,000 daltons was specifically labeled, suggesting that this protein may be the opioid (enkephalin) receptor.

  6. Kappa-opioid receptor signaling and brain reward function

    PubMed Central

    Bruijnzeel, Adrie W.

    2009-01-01

    The dynorphin-like peptides have profound effects on the state of the brain reward system and human and animal behavior. The dynorphin-like peptides affect locomotor activity, food intake, sexual behavior, anxiety-like behavior, and drug intake. Stimulation of kappa-opioid receptors, the endogenous receptor for the dynorphin-like peptides, inhibits dopamine release in the striatum (nucleus accumbens and caudate putamen) and induces a negative mood state in humans and animals. The administration of drugs of abuse increases the release of dopamine in the striatum and mediates the concomitant release of dynorphin-like peptides in this brain region. The reviewed studies suggest that chronic drug intake leads to an upregulation of the brain dynorphin system in the striatum and in particular in the dorsal part of the striatum/caudate putamen. This might inhibit drug-induced dopamine release and provide protection against the neurotoxic effects of high dopamine levels. After the discontinuation of chronic drug intake these neuroadaptations remain unopposed which has been suggested to contribute to the negative emotional state associated with drug withdrawal and increased drug intake. Kappa-opioid receptor agonists have also been shown to inhibit calcium channels. Calcium channel inhibitors have antidepressant-like effects and inhibit the release of norepinephrine. This might explain that in some studies kappa-opioid receptor agonists attenuate nicotine and opioid withdrawal symptomatology. A better understanding of the role of dynorphins in the regulation of brain reward function might contribute to the development of novel treatments for mood disorders and other disorders that stem from a dysregulation of the brain reward system. PMID:19804796

  7. The Effect of CRH, Dexamethasone and Naltrexone on the Mu, Delta and Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonist Binding in Lamb Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis.

    PubMed

    Pierzchała-Koziec, Krystyna; Dziedzicka-Wasylewska, Marta; Oeltgen, Peter; Zubel-Łojek, Joanna; Latacz, Anna; Ocłon, Ewa

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate changes in the opioid receptor binding (mu, delta and kappa) in the hypothalamus, anterior pituitary and adrenal cortex (HPA) of lambs treated in vivo with corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH), naltrexone, an opioid receptor antagonist (NAL), and dexamethasone, a potent cortisol analog (DEX). Experiment was carried out on 3 months old female lambs of polish mountain strain. Lambs received a single i.v. injection of NaCl (control), CRH (alone or in combination with naltrexone), naltrexone or dexamethasone. One hour later animals were decapitated under anaesthesia, tissues were dissected out and receptor binding assays were performed with radioligands for each type of opioid receptors--3H-DAGO, 3H-DPDPE and 3H-EKC for mu, delta and kappa receptor, respectively. Coexistence of specific binding sites for each type of opioid receptor was demonstrated in all levels of HPA axis of control lambs, however their distribution was uneven. Acute treatment with CRH, DEX and NAL caused downregulation or upregulation of mu, delta, kappa receptor binding in each level of HPA axis. CRH effects on mu, delta and kappa opioid receptor binding varied within the HPA axis and were modulated by naltrexone. Treatment with naltrexone increased in vitro mu, delta and kappa receptor binding in most tested structures except delta receptor binding in adrenal (decrease by 52%) and kappa receptor binding in pituitary (decrease by 41%). Dexamethasone significantly decreased the mu, delta and kappa opioid receptor binding in adrenal cortex but differentially affected opioid receptor binding in hypothalamus and pituitary. It seems probable that endogenous opioid peptides acting through mu, delta and kappa receptors interact with the hormones released from the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in physiological and pathophysiological situations.

  8. Kinetic study of N-type calcium current modulation by delta-opioid receptor activation in the mammalian cell line NG108-15.

    PubMed Central

    Toselli, M; Tosetti, P; Taglietti, V

    1999-01-01

    The voltage-dependent inhibition of N-type Ca2+ channel current by the delta-opioid agonist [D-pen2, D-pen5]-enkephalin (DPDPE) was investigated in the mammalian cell line NG108-15 with 10 microM nifedipine to block L-type channels, with whole-cell voltage clamp methods. In in vitro differentiated NG108-15 cells DPDPE reversibly decreased omega-conotoxin GVIA-sensitive Ba2+ currents in a concentration-dependent way. Inhibition was maximal with 1 microM DPDPE (66% at 0 mV) and was characterized by a slowing of Ba2+ current activation at low test potentials. Both inhibition and kinetic slowing were attenuated at more positive potentials and could be relieved up to 90% by strong conditioning depolarizations. The kinetics of removal of inhibition (de-inhibition) and of its retrieval (re-inhibition) were also voltage dependent. Both de-inhibition and re-inhibition were single exponentials and, in the voltage range from -20 to +10 mV, had significantly different time constants at a given membrane potential, the time course of re-inhibition being faster than that of de-inhibition. The kinetics of de-inhibition at -20 mV and of reinhibition at -40 mV were also concentration dependent, both processes becoming slower at lower agonist concentrations. The rate of de-inhibition at +80/+120 mV was similar to that of Ca2+ channel activation at the same potentials measured during application of DPDPE (approximately 7 ms), both processes being much slower than channel activation in controls (<1 ms). Moreover, the amplitude but not the time course of tail currents changed as the depolarization to +80/+120 mV was made longer. The state-dependent properties of DPDPE Ca2+ channel inhibition could be simulated by a model that assumes that inhibition by DPDPE results from voltage- and concentration-dependent binding of an inhibitory molecule to the N-type channel. PMID:10233071

  9. Does the kappa opioid receptor system contribute to pain aversion?

    PubMed Central

    Cahill, Catherine M.; Taylor, Anna M. W.; Cook, Christopher; Ong, Edmund; Morón, Jose A.; Evans, Christopher J.

    2014-01-01

    The kappa opioid receptor (KOR) and the endogenous peptide-ligand dynorphin have received significant attention due the involvement in mediating a variety of behavioral and neurophysiological responses, including opposing the rewarding properties of drugs of abuse including opioids. Accumulating evidence indicates this system is involved in regulating states of motivation and emotion. Acute activation of the KOR produces an increase in motivational behavior to escape a threat, however, KOR activation associated with chronic stress leads to the expression of symptoms indicative of mood disorders. It is well accepted that KOR can produce analgesia and is engaged in chronic pain states including neuropathic pain. Spinal studies have revealed KOR-induced analgesia in reversing pain hypersensitivities associated with peripheral nerve injury. While systemic administration of KOR agonists attenuates nociceptive sensory transmission, this effect appears to be a stress-induced effect as anxiolytic agents, including delta opioid receptor agonists, mitigate KOR agonist-induced analgesia. Additionally, while the role of KOR and dynorphin in driving the dysphoric and aversive components of stress and drug withdrawal has been well characterized, how this system mediates the negative emotional states associated with chronic pain is relatively unexplored. This review provides evidence that dynorphin and the KOR system contribute to the negative affective component of pain and that this receptor system likely contributes to the high comorbidity of mood disorders associated with chronic neuropathic pain. PMID:25452729

  10. Sigma and opioid receptors in human brain tumors

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, G.E.; Szuecs, M.; Mamone, J.Y.; Bem, W.T.; Rush, M.D.; Johnson, F.E.; Coscia, C.J. )

    1990-01-01

    Human brain tumors and nude mouse-borne human neuroblastomas and gliomas were analyzed for sigma and opioid receptor content. Sigma binding was assessed using ({sup 3}H) 1, 3-di-o-tolylguanidine (DTG), whereas opioid receptor subtypes were measured with tritiated forms of the following: {mu}, (D-ala{sup 2}, mePhe{sup 4}, gly-ol{sup 5}) enkephalin (DAMGE); {kappa}, ethylketocyclazocine (EKC) or U69,593; {delta}, (D-pen{sup 2}, D-pen{sup 5}) enkephalin (DPDPE) or (D-ala{sup 2}, D-leu{sup 5}) enkephalin (DADLE) with {mu} suppressor present. Binding parameters were estimated by homologous displacement assays followed by analysis using the LIGAND program. Sigma binding was detected in 15 of 16 tumors examined with very high levels found in a brain metastasis from an adenocarcinoma of lung and a human neuroblastoma (SK-N-MC) passaged in nude mice. {kappa} opioid receptor binding was detected in 4 of 4 glioblastoma multiforme specimens and 2 of 2 human astrocytoma cell lines tested but not in the other brain tumors analyzed.

  11. Does the kappa opioid receptor system contribute to pain aversion?

    PubMed

    Cahill, Catherine M; Taylor, Anna M W; Cook, Christopher; Ong, Edmund; Morón, Jose A; Evans, Christopher J

    2014-01-01

    The kappa opioid receptor (KOR) and the endogenous peptide-ligand dynorphin have received significant attention due the involvement in mediating a variety of behavioral and neurophysiological responses, including opposing the rewarding properties of drugs of abuse including opioids. Accumulating evidence indicates this system is involved in regulating states of motivation and emotion. Acute activation of the KOR produces an increase in motivational behavior to escape a threat, however, KOR activation associated with chronic stress leads to the expression of symptoms indicative of mood disorders. It is well accepted that KOR can produce analgesia and is engaged in chronic pain states including neuropathic pain. Spinal studies have revealed KOR-induced analgesia in reversing pain hypersensitivities associated with peripheral nerve injury. While systemic administration of KOR agonists attenuates nociceptive sensory transmission, this effect appears to be a stress-induced effect as anxiolytic agents, including delta opioid receptor agonists, mitigate KOR agonist-induced analgesia. Additionally, while the role of KOR and dynorphin in driving the dysphoric and aversive components of stress and drug withdrawal has been well characterized, how this system mediates the negative emotional states associated with chronic pain is relatively unexplored. This review provides evidence that dynorphin and the KOR system contribute to the negative affective component of pain and that this receptor system likely contributes to the high comorbidity of mood disorders associated with chronic neuropathic pain.

  12. Effect of sodium ion on the affinity of naloxone for the kappa opioid receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Cheney, B.V.; Lahti, R.A.

    1987-03-16

    Several investigators have observed that sodium ion enhances the binding of naloxone to opioid receptors. This effect has generally been attributed to allosteric modulation of the state of the mu receptor. However, a recent claim has been made that the enhancement does not involve a change in the mu receptor, but instead occurs because naloxone becomes a more kappa-specific drug when sodium ion is present in high concentration. Since the claim was not based on experimental evidence from binding studies involving known high-affinity kappa ligands, the authors have investigated the competition of naloxone for the kappa site using (/sup 3/H)U-69593 as the marker for receptor binding. Assays were carried out in the presence and absence of 100 mM NaCl. The results of the study indicate that sodium ion does not increase the affinity of naloxone or U-69593 for the kappa receptor. 9 references, 1 figure.

  13. Antidepressant-like Effects of δ Opioid Receptor Agonists in Animal Models

    PubMed Central

    Saitoh, Akiyoshi; Yamada, Mitsuhiko

    2012-01-01

    Recently, δ opioid receptor agonists have been proposed to be attractive targets for the development of novel antidepressants. Several studies revealed that single treatment of δ opioid receptor agonists produce antidepressant-like effects in the forced swimming test, which is one of the most popular animal models for screening antidepressants. In addition, subchronic treatment with δ opioid receptor agonists has been shown to completely attenuate the hyperemotional responses found in olfactory bulbectomized rats. This animal model exhibits hyperemotional behavior that may mimic the anxiety, aggression, and irritability found in depressed patients, suggesting that δ opioid receptor agonists could be effective in the treatment of these symptoms in depression. On the other hand, prototype δ opioid receptor agonists produce convulsive effects, which limit their therapeutic potential and clinical development. In this review, we presented the current knowledge regarding the antidepressant-like effects of δ opioid receptor agonists, which include some recently developed drugs lacking convulsive effects. PMID:23449756

  14. Effects of chronic opioid exposure on guinea pig mu opioid receptor in Chinese hamster ovary cells: Comparison with human and rat receptor

    PubMed Central

    Wallisch, Michael; Nelson, Cole S.; Mulvaney, Julia M.; Hernandez, Heather S.; Smith, Sue Ann; Olsen, George D.

    2007-01-01

    Chronic opioid treatment leads to agonist-specific effects at the mu opioid receptor. The molecular mechanisms resulting from chronic opioid exposure include desensitization, internalization and down-regulation of membrane-bound mu opioid receptors (MOP). The purpose of this study was to compare the cellular regulation of guinea pig, human and rat MOP expressed in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, following exposure to two clinically important opioids, morphine and methadone. MOP expressing CHO cells were treated in culture with methadone or morphine for up to 48 hours. Radioligand diprenorphine and [D-AIa2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly5-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO)-stimulated GTPγS binding assays were carried out using paired control and opioid-exposed CHO cells. Methadone induced downregulation of the mu opioid receptor, while morphine induced desensitization of the receptor for all three species. Furthermore, morphine predominantly decreased the potency of DAMGO to stimulate GTPγS binding, whereas methadone primarily reduced its efficacy. Changes in DAMGO potency and efficacy differed among species and depended on the opioid used to treat the cells. Our results showed similarities between guinea pig and human MOP for morphine-induced desensitization, but identified differences between the two for methadone-induced desensitization. In contrast, human and rat MOP differed in response to morphine treatment, but were not distinct in their response to methadone treatment. The guinea pig is an excellent and established animal model to study opioid effects, but its molecular opioid pharmacology has not been investigated thus far. These results can assist in understanding species differences in the effects of opioid ligands activating the mu opioid receptor. PMID:17343833

  15. Nociceptin/Orphanin FQ Receptor Structure, Signaling, Ligands, Functions, and Interactions with Opioid Systems

    PubMed Central

    Bruchas, Michael R.; Calo', Girolamo; Cox, Brian M.; Zaveri, Nurulain T.

    2016-01-01

    The NOP receptor (nociceptin/orphanin FQ opioid peptide receptor) is the most recently discovered member of the opioid receptor family and, together with its endogenous ligand, N/OFQ, make up the fourth members of the opioid receptor and opioid peptide family. Because of its more recent discovery, an understanding of the cellular and behavioral actions induced by NOP receptor activation are less well developed than for the other members of the opioid receptor family. All of these factors are important because NOP receptor activation has a clear modulatory role on mu opioid receptor-mediated actions and thereby affects opioid analgesia, tolerance development, and reward. In addition to opioid modulatory actions, NOP receptor activation has important effects on motor function and other physiologic processes. This review discusses how NOP pharmacology intersects, contrasts, and interacts with the mu opioid receptor in terms of tertiary structure and mechanism of receptor activation; location of receptors in the central nervous system; mechanisms of desensitization and downregulation; cellular actions; intracellular signal transduction pathways; and behavioral actions with respect to analgesia, tolerance, dependence, and reward. This is followed by a discussion of the agonists and antagonists that have most contributed to our current knowledge. Because NOP receptors are highly expressed in brain and spinal cord and NOP receptor activation sometimes synergizes with mu receptor-mediated actions and sometimes opposes them, an understanding of NOP receptor pharmacology in the context of these interactions with the opioid receptors will be crucial to the development of novel therapeutics that engage the NOP receptor. PMID:26956246

  16. Studies Toward the Pharmacophore of Salvinorin A, a Potent Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonist

    PubMed Central

    Munro, Thomas A.; Rizzacasa, Mark A.; Roth, Bryan L.; Toth, Beth A.; Yan, Feng

    2009-01-01

    Salvinorin A (1), from the sage Salvia divinorum, is a potent and selective kappa opioid receptor (KOR) agonist. We screened other salvinorins and derivatives for binding affinity and functional activity at opioid receptors. Our results suggest that the methyl ester and furan ring are required for activity, but that the lactone and ketone functionalities are not. Other salvinorins showed negligible binding affinity at the KOR. None of the compounds bound to mu or delta opioid receptors. PMID:15658846

  17. Studies toward the pharmacophore of salvinorin A, a potent kappa opioid receptor agonist.

    PubMed

    Munro, Thomas A; Rizzacasa, Mark A; Roth, Bryan L; Toth, Beth A; Yan, Feng

    2005-01-27

    Salvinorin A (1), from the sage Salvia divinorum, is a potent and selective kappa opioid receptor (KOR) agonist. We screened other salvinorins and derivatives for binding affinity and functional activity at opioid receptors. Our results suggest that the methyl ester and furan ring are required for activity but that the lactone and ketone functionalities are not. Other salvinorins showed negligible binding affinity at the KOR. None of the compounds bound to mu or delta opioid receptors.

  18. Impact of efficacy at the μ-opioid receptor on antinociceptive effects of combinations of μ-opioid receptor agonists and cannabinoid receptor agonists.

    PubMed

    Maguire, David R; France, Charles P

    2014-11-01

    Cannabinoid receptor agonists, such as Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC), enhance the antinociceptive effects of μ-opioid receptor agonists, which suggests that combining cannabinoids with opioids would improve pain treatment. Combinations with lower efficacy agonists might be preferred and could avoid adverse effects associated with large doses; however, it is unclear whether interactions between opioids and cannabinoids vary across drugs with different efficacy. The antinociceptive effects of μ-opioid receptor agonists alone and in combination with cannabinoid receptor agonists were studied in rhesus monkeys (n = 4) using a warm water tail withdrawal procedure. Etorphine, fentanyl, morphine, buprenorphine, nalbuphine, Δ(9)-THC, and CP 55,940 (2-[(1R,2R,5R)-5-hydroxy-2-(3-hydroxypropyl) cyclohexyl]-5-(2-methyloctan-2-yl)phenol) each increased tail withdrawal latency. Pretreatment with doses of Δ(9)-THC (1.0 mg/kg) or CP 55,940 (0.032 mg/kg) that were ineffective alone shifted the fentanyl dose-effect curve leftward 20.6- and 52.9-fold, respectively, and the etorphine dose-effect curve leftward 12.4- and 19.6-fold, respectively. Δ(9)-THC and CP 55,940 shifted the morphine dose-effect curve leftward only 3.4- and 7.9-fold, respectively, and the buprenorphine curve only 5.4- and 4.1-fold, respectively. Neither Δ(9)-THC nor CP 55,940 significantly altered the effects of nalbuphine. Cannabinoid receptor agonists increase the antinociceptive potency of higher efficacy opioid receptor agonists more than lower efficacy agonists; however, because much smaller doses of each drug can be administered in combinations while achieving adequate pain relief and that other (e.g., abuse-related) effects of opioids do not appear to be enhanced by cannabinoids, these results provide additional support for combining opioids with cannabinoids to treat pain.

  19. Opioid mediated activity and expression of mu and delta opioid receptors in isolated human term non-labouring myometrium.

    PubMed

    Fanning, Rebecca A; McMorrow, Jason P; Campion, Deirdre P; Carey, Michael F; O'Connor, John J

    2013-01-05

    The existence of opioid receptors in mammalian myometrial tissue is now widely accepted. Previously enkephalin degrading enzymes have been shown to be elevated in pregnant rat uterus and a met-enkephalin analogue has been shown to alter spontaneous contractility of rat myometrium. Here we have undertaken studies to determine the effects of met-enkephalin on in vitro human myometrial contractility and investigate the expression of opioid receptors in pregnant myometrium. Myometrial biopsies were taken from women undergoing elective caesarean delivery at term. Organ bath experiments were used to investigate the effect of the met-enkephalin analogue [d-Ala 2, d-met 5] enkephalin (DAMEA) on spontaneous contractility. A confocal immunofluorescent technique and real time PCR were used to determine the expression of protein and mRNA, respectively for two opioid receptor subtypes, mu and delta. DAMEA had a concentration dependent inhibitory effect on contractile activity (1 × 10(-7)M-1 × 10(-4)M; 54% reduction in contractile activity, P<0.001 at 1 × 10(-4)M concentration). Mu and delta opioid receptor protein sub-types and their respective mRNA were identified in all tissues sampled. This is the first report of opioid receptor expression and of an opioid mediated uterorelaxant action in term human non-labouring myometrium in vitro.

  20. Opioid neurotransmission in the post-ictal analgesia: involvement of mu(1)-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Coimbra, N C; Freitas, R L; Savoldi, M; Castro-Souza, C; Segato, E N; Kishi, R; Weltson, A; Resende, G C

    2001-06-08

    Pentylenetetrazol (PTZ), a non-competitive antagonist that blocks GABA-mediated Cl(-) flux, was used in the present work to induce seizures in animals. The aim of this work is to study the neurochemical basis of the antinociception induced by convulsions elicited by peripheral administration of PTZ (64 mg/kg). The analgesia was measured by the tail-flick test, in eight rats per group. Convulsions were followed by significative increase in the tail-flick latencies (TFL), for at least 120 min of the post-ictal period. Peripheral administration of naltrexone (5 mg/kg, 10 mg/kg and 20 mg/kg) caused a significant decrease in the TFL in seizing animals, as compared to controls. These data were corroborated with peripheral administration of naloxonazine (10 mg/kg and 20 mg/kg), a mu(1)-opioid blocker, in the same doses used for non-specific antagonist. These results indicate that endogenous opioids may be involved in the post-ictal analgesia. The involvement of mu(1)-opioid receptor was also considered.

  1. Development of concepts on the interaction of drugs with opioid receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuzmina, N. E.; Kuzmin, V. S.

    2011-02-01

    The development of concepts on the molecular mechanisms of the action of medicinal drugs on the opioid receptors is briefly surveyed. The modern point of view on the mechanism of activation of opioid receptors is given based on the data from chimeric and site-directed mutagenesis of the cloned opioid receptors and the computer-aided simulations of the reception zone and ligand-receptor complexes. Three-dimensional models of the opioid pharmacophore derived by both conventional methods and a comparative analysis of molecular fields are described in detail.

  2. Fluoxetine alters mu opioid receptor expression in obese Zucker rat extrahypothalamic regions.

    PubMed

    Churruca, Itziar; Portillo, María P; Zumalabe, José María; Macarulla, María T; Sáenz Del Burgo, Laura; Zarate, Jon; Echevarría, Enrique

    2006-03-01

    The aim of this article was to describe the effects of chronic fluoxetine on mu opioid receptor expression in obese Zucker rat extrahypothalamic regions. Male obese Zucker (fa/fa) rats were administered with fluoxetine (10 mg/kg; i.p.) daily for two weeks. Brain regional immunostaining for mu opioid receptor was carried out. An increase in the numbers of neural cells immunostained for mu opioid receptor in caudatus-putamen, dentate gyrus, lateral septum, amygdala, and frontal, parietal, and piriform cortices was observed. Increased mu opioid receptor expression in the central amygdaloid nuclei suggests a decreased opioidergic tone at this level that could be involved in fluoxetine anorectic action.

  3. High-affinity carbamate analogues of morphinan at opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Peng, Xuemei; Knapp, Brian I; Bidlack, Jean M; Neumeyer, John L

    2007-03-15

    A series of carbamate analogues were synthesized from levorphanol (1a), cyclorphan (2a) or butorphan (3a) and evaluated in vitro for their binding affinity at mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors. Functional activities of these compounds were measured in the [(35)S]GTPgammaS binding assay. Phenyl carbamate derivatives 2d and 3d showed the highest binding affinity for kappa receptor (K(i)=0.046 and 0.051 nM) and for mu receptor (K(i)=0.11 and 0.12 nM). Compound 1c showed the highest mu selectivity. The preliminary assay for agonist and antagonist properties of these ligands in stimulating [(35)S]GTPgammaS binding mediated by the kappa opioid receptor illustrated that all of these ligands were kappa agonists. At the mu receptor, compounds 1b, 1c, 2b, and 3b were agonists, while compounds 2c-e and 3c-e were mu agonists/antagonists.

  4. Analysis of central opioid receptor subtype antagonism of hypotonic and hypertonic saline intake in water-deprived rats.

    PubMed

    Bodnar, R J; Glass, M J; Koch, J E

    1995-01-01

    Intake of either hypotonic or hypertonic saline solutions is modulated in part by the endogenous opioid system. Morphine and selective mu and delta opioid agonists increase saline intake, while general opioid antagonists reduce saline intake in rats. The present study evaluated whether intracerebroventricular administration of general (naltrexone) and selective mu (beta-funaltrexamine, 5-20 micrograms), mu, (naloxonazine, 50 micrograms), kappa (nor-binaltorphamine, 5-20 micrograms), delta (naltrindole, 20 micrograms), or delta 1 (DALCE, 40 micrograms) opioid receptor subtype antagonists altered water intake and either hypotonic (0.6%) or hypertonic (1.7%) saline intake in water-deprived (24 h) rats over a 3-h time course in a two-bottle choice test. Whereas peripheral naltrexone (0.5-2.5 mg/kg) significantly reduced water intake and hypertonic saline intake, central naltrexone (1-50 micrograms) significantly reduced water intake and hypotonic saline intake. Water intake was significantly reduced following mu and kappa receptor antagonism, but not following mu 1, delta, or delta 1 receptor antagonism. In contrast, neither hypotonic nor hypertonic saline intake was significantly altered by any selective antagonist. These data are discussed in terms of opioid receptor subtype control over saline intake relative to the animal's hydrational state and the roles of palatability and/or salt appetite.

  5. Muscarinic and opioid receptor modulation of release of (Met/sup 5/-enkephalin immunoreactive material and catecholamines from the bovine adrenal gland

    SciTech Connect

    Barron, B.A.

    1985-01-01

    Retrogradely perfused bovine adrenal glands were stimulated by acetylcholine (ACh) and 1,1-dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium (DMPP), with or without: hexamethonium (C-6), atropine, imipramine, methacholine, pilocarpine, etorphine, or diprenorphine. Stimulation by either ACh DMPP resulted in an increased release of both (Met/sup 5/)-enkephalin immunoreactive material (ME-IRM) and catecholamines as measured by radioimmunoassay and high performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection, respectively. ACh (5 x 10/sup -5/ M) and DMPP (5 x 10/sup -5/ M) stimulated the release of norepinephrine greater than the release of epinephrine. The action of these agents was antagonized by C-6(5 x 10/sup -4/ M). Atropine (5 x 10/sup -7/ M) antagonized the action of ACh to stimulate norepinephrine and MI-IRM release while having no effect on DMPP-stimulated release. Imipramine (5 x 10/sup -6/ M) had no effect on either ACh or DMPP-stimulated release. Methacholine (4 x 10/sup -5/ M) potentiated the DMPP (1 x 10/sup -5/ M) stimulation of ME-IRM and catecholamine release; pilocarpine (4 x 10/sup -5/ M) significantly potentiated only the DMPP-stimulated release of norepinephrine. Pilocarpine (5 x 10/sup -5/ M) and muscarine (5 x 10/sup -5/ M) had no effect on the secretion of MI-IRM and catecholamines from the bovine adrenal gland. Etorphine (5 x 10/sup -7/ M) significantly decreased the ACh and DMPP stimulation ME-IRM and catecholamine release. The activity of a muscarinic cholinergic receptor in the bovine adrenal medulla in stimulus-secretion coupling has been controversial. The binding of /sup 3/H-quinuclidinyl benzilate to chromaffin granule membranes was investigated to further characterize muscarinic receptors in the bovine adrenal gland.

  6. Early role of the κ opioid receptor in ethanol-induced reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Pautassi, Ricardo Marcos; Nizhnikov, Michael E; Acevedo, Ma Belén; Spear, Norman E

    2012-03-20

    Effects of early ethanol exposure on later ethanol intake emphasize the importance of understanding the neurobiology of ethanol-induced reinforcement early in life. Infant rats exhibit ethanol-induced appetitive conditioning and ethanol-induced locomotor activation, which have been linked in theory and may have mechanisms in common. The appetitive effects of ethanol are significantly modulated by μ and δ opioid receptors, whereas μ but not δ receptors are involved in the motor stimulant effects of ethanol during early development. The involvement of the κ opioid receptor (KOR) system in the motivational effects of ethanol has been much less explored. The present study assessed, in preweanling (infant) rats, the modulatory role of the KOR system in several paradigms sensitive to ethanol-induced reinforcement. Kappa opioid activation and blockade were examined in second-order conditioned place preference with varied timing before conditioning and with varied ethanol doses. The role of KOR on ethanol-induced locomotion and ethanol-induced taste conditioning was also explored. The experiments were based on the assumption that ethanol concurrently induces appetitive and aversive effects and that the latter may be mediated by activation of kappa receptors. The main result was that blockade of kappa function facilitated the expression of appetitive ethanol reinforcement in terms of tactile and taste conditioning. The effects of kappa activation on ethanol conditioning seemed to be independent from ethanol's stimulant effects. Kappa opioid activation potentiated the motor depressing effects of ethanol but enhanced motor activity in control subjects. Overall, the results support the hypothesis that a reduced function of the KOR system in nondependent subjects should attenuate the aversive consequences of ethanol.

  7. Early role of the κ opioid receptor in ethanol-induced reinforcement

    PubMed Central

    Pautassi, Ricardo Marcos; Nizhnikov, Michael E.; Acevedo, Ma. Belén; Spear, Norman E.

    2012-01-01

    Effects of early ethanol exposure on later ethanol intake emphasize the importance of understanding the neurobiology of ethanol-induced reinforcement early in life. Infant rats exhibit ethanol-induced appetitive conditioning and ethanol-induced locomotor activation, which have been linked in theory and may have mechanisms in common. The appetitive effects of ethanol are significantly modulated by μ and δ opioid receptors, whereas μ but not δ receptors are involved in the motor stimulant effects of ethanol during early development. The involvement of the κ opioid receptor (KOR) system in the motivational effects of ethanol has been much less explored. The present study assessed, in preweanling (infant) rats, the modulatory role of the KOR system in several paradigms sensitive to ethanol-induced reinforcement. Kappa opioid activation and blockade was examined in second-order conditioned place preference with varied timing before conditioning and with varied ethanol doses. The role of KOR on ethanol-induced locomotion and ethanol-induced taste conditioning was also explored. The experiments were based on the assumption that ethanol concurrently induces appetitive and aversive effects and that the latter may be mediated by activation of kappa receptors. The main result was that blockade of kappa function facilitated the expression of appetitive ethanol reinforcement in terms of tactile and taste conditioning. The effects of kappa activation on ethanol conditioning seemed to be independent from ethanol's stimulant effects. Kappa opioid activation potentiated the motor depressing effects of ethanol but enhanced motor activity in control subjects. Overall, the results support the hypothesis that a reduced function of the KOR system in nondependent subjects should attenuate the aversive consequences of ethanol. PMID:22261437

  8. Synaptic localization of. kappa. opioid receptors in guinea pig neostriatum

    SciTech Connect

    Jomary, C.; Beaudet, A. ); Gairin, J.E. )

    1992-01-15

    Distribution of {kappa} opioid receptors was examined by EM radioautography in sections of guinea pig neostriatum with the selective {sup 125}I-labeled dynorphin analog (D-Pro{sup 10})dynorphin-(1-11). Most specifically labeled binding sites were found by probability circle analysis to be associated with neuronal membrane appositions. Because of limitations in resolution of the method, the radioactive sources could not be ascribed directly to either one of the apposed plasma membranes. Nevertheless, three lines of evidence favored a predominant association of ligand with dendrites of intrinsic striatal neurons: (1) the high frequency with which labeled interfaces implicated a dendrite, (2) the enrichment of dendrodendritic interfaces, and (3) the occurrence of dendritic profiles labeled at several contact points along their plasma membranes. A small proportion of labeled sites was associated with axo-axonic interfaces, which may subserve the {kappa} opioid-induced regulation of presynaptic dopamine and acetylcholine release documented in guinea pig neostriatum. These results support the hypothesis that in mammalian brain {kappa} opioid receptors are conformationally and functionally distinct from {mu} and {delta} types.

  9. Synaptic localization of kappa opioid receptors in guinea pig neostriatum.

    PubMed Central

    Jomary, C; Gairin, J E; Beaudet, A

    1992-01-01

    Distribution of kappa opioid receptors was examined by EM radioautography in sections of guinea pig neostriatum with the selective 125I-labeled dynorphin analog [D-Pro10]dynorphin-(1-11). Most specifically labeled binding sites were found by probability circle analysis to be associated with neuronal membrane appositions. Because of limitations in resolution of the method, the radioactive sources could not be ascribed directly to either one of the apposed plasma membranes. Nevertheless, three lines of evidence favored a predominant association of ligand with dendrites of intrinsic striatal neurons: (i) the high frequency with which labeled interfaces implicated a dendrite, (ii) the enrichment of dendro-dendritic interfaces, and (iii) the occurrence of dendritic profiles labeled at several contact points along their plasma membranes. A small proportion of labeled sites was associated with axo-axonic interfaces, which may subserve the kappa opioid-induced regulation of presynaptic dopamine and acetylcholine release documented in guinea pig neostriatum. Although most membrane-associated kappa sites were found at extrasynaptic locations, approximately 23% were associated with synaptic specializations. This proportion is markedly higher than that previously reported for either mu or delta sites in rat neostriatum. Whether labeled synapses represent preferential sites of action for kappa ligands remains to be established. In any event, these results support the hypothesis that in mammalian brain kappa opioid receptors are conformationally and functionally distinct from mu and delta types. Images PMID:1346233

  10. Synaptic localization of kappa opioid receptors in guinea pig neostriatum.

    PubMed

    Jomary, C; Gairin, J E; Beaudet, A

    1992-01-15

    Distribution of kappa opioid receptors was examined by EM radioautography in sections of guinea pig neostriatum with the selective 125I-labeled dynorphin analog [D-Pro10]dynorphin-(1-11). Most specifically labeled binding sites were found by probability circle analysis to be associated with neuronal membrane appositions. Because of limitations in resolution of the method, the radioactive sources could not be ascribed directly to either one of the apposed plasma membranes. Nevertheless, three lines of evidence favored a predominant association of ligand with dendrites of intrinsic striatal neurons: (i) the high frequency with which labeled interfaces implicated a dendrite, (ii) the enrichment of dendro-dendritic interfaces, and (iii) the occurrence of dendritic profiles labeled at several contact points along their plasma membranes. A small proportion of labeled sites was associated with axo-axonic interfaces, which may subserve the kappa opioid-induced regulation of presynaptic dopamine and acetylcholine release documented in guinea pig neostriatum. Although most membrane-associated kappa sites were found at extrasynaptic locations, approximately 23% were associated with synaptic specializations. This proportion is markedly higher than that previously reported for either mu or delta sites in rat neostriatum. Whether labeled synapses represent preferential sites of action for kappa ligands remains to be established. In any event, these results support the hypothesis that in mammalian brain kappa opioid receptors are conformationally and functionally distinct from mu and delta types.

  11. Molecular mechanism for opioid dichotomy: bidirectional effect of μ-opioid receptors on P2X₃ receptor currents in rat sensory neurones.

    PubMed

    Chizhmakov, Igor; Kulyk, Vyacheslav; Khasabova, Iryna; Khasabov, Sergey; Simone, Donald; Bakalkin, Georgy; Gordienko, Dmitri; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Krishtal, Oleg

    2015-06-01

    Here, we describe a molecular switch associated with opioid receptors-linked signalling cascades that provides a dual opioid control over P2X3 purinoceptor in sensory neurones. Leu-enkephalin inhibited P2X3-mediated currents with IC50 ~10 nM in ~25% of small nociceptive rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurones. In contrast, in neurones pretreated with pertussis toxin leu-enkephalin produced stable and significant increase of P2X3 currents. All effects of opioid were abolished by selective μ-opioid receptor antagonist D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH2 (CTOP), nonselective inhibitor naloxone, and by PLC inhibitor U73122. Thus, we discovered a dual link between purinoceptors and μ-opioid receptors: the latter exert both inhibitory (pertussis toxin-sensitive) and stimulatory (pertussis toxin-insensitive) actions on P2X3 receptors through phospholipase C (PLC)-dependent pathways. This dual opioid control of P2X3 receptors may provide a molecular explanation for dichotomy of opioid therapy. Pharmacological control of this newly identified facilitation/inhibition switch may open new perspectives for the adequate medical use of opioids, the most powerful pain-killing agents known today.

  12. Opioid agonist efficacy predicts the magnitude of tolerance and the regulation of μ-opioid receptors and dynamin-2

    PubMed Central

    Pawar, Mohit; Kumar, Priyank; Sunkaraneni, Soujanya; Sirohi, Sunil; Walker, Ellen A.; Yoburn, Byron C.

    2007-01-01

    It has been proposed that opioid agonist efficacy may play a role in tolerance and the regulation of opioid receptor density. To address this issue, the present studies estimated the in vivo efficacy of three opioid agonists and then examined changes in spinal μ-opioid receptor density following chronic treatment in the mouse. In addition, tolerance and regulation of the trafficking protein dynamin-2 were determined. To evaluate efficacy, the method of irreversible receptor alkylation was employed and the efficacy parameter τ estimated. Mice were injected with the irreversible μ-opioid receptor antagonist clocinnamox (0.32–25.6mg/kg, i.p), and 24h later, the analgesic potency of s.c. morphine, oxycodone and etorphine were determined. Clocinnamox dose-dependently antagonized the analgesic effects of morphine, etorphine and oxycodone. The shift to the right of the dose-response curves was greater for morphine and oxycodone compared to etorphine and the highest dose of clocinnamox reduced the maximal effect of morphine and oxycodone, but not etorphine. The order of efficacy calculated from these results was etorphine > morphine > oxycodone. Other mice were infused for 7 days with oxycodone (10–150 mg/kg/day, s.c.) or etorphine (50–250ug/kg/day, s.c.) and the analgesic potency of s.c. morphine determined. The low efficacy agonist (oxycodone) produced more tolerance than the high efficacy agonist (etorphine) at equi-effective infusion doses. In saturation binding experiments, the low efficacy opioid agonists (morphine, oxycodone) did not regulate the density of spinal μ-opioid receptors, while etorphine produced ≈ 40% reduction in μ-opioid receptor density. Furthermore, etorphine increased spinal dynamin-2 abundance, while oxycodone did not produce any significant change in dynamin-2 abundance. Overall, these data indicate that high efficacy agonists produce less tolerance at equi-effective doses. Furthermore, increased efficacy was associated with μ-opioid

  13. Mu Opioid Receptor Actions in the Lateral Habenula

    PubMed Central

    Margolis, Elyssa B.; Fields, Howard L.

    2016-01-01

    Increased activity of lateral habenula (LHb) neurons is correlated with aversive states including pain, opioid abstinence, rodent models of depression, and failure to receive a predicted reward. Agonists at the mu opioid receptor (MOR) are among the most powerful rewarding and pain relieving drugs. Injection of the MOR agonist morphine directly into the habenula produces analgesia, raising the possibility that MOR acts locally within the LHb. Consequently, we examined the synaptic actions of MOR agonists in the LHb using whole cell patch clamp recording. We found that the MOR selective agonist DAMGO inhibits a subset of LHb neurons both directly and by inhibiting glutamate release onto these cells. Paradoxically, DAMGO also presynaptically inhibited GABA release onto most LHb neurons. The behavioral effect of MOR activation will thus depend upon both the level of intrinsic neuronal activity in the LHb and the balance of activity in glutamate and GABA inputs to different LHb neuronal populations. PMID:27427945

  14. Functional interaction between alpha2-adrenoceptors, mu- and kappa-opioid receptors in the guinea pig myenteric plexus: effect of chronic desipramine treatment.

    PubMed

    Canciani, Luca; Giaroni, Cristina; Zanetti, Elena; Giuliani, Daniela; Pisani, Rossana; Moro, Elisabetta; Trinchera, Marco; Crema, Francesca; Lecchini, Sergio; Frigo, Gianmario

    2006-12-28

    The existence of a functional interplay between alpha(2)-adrenoceptor and opioid receptor inhibitory pathways modulating neurotransmitter release has been demonstrated in the enteric nervous system by development of sensitivity changes to alpha(2)-adrenoceptor, mu- and kappa-opioid receptor agents on enteric cholinergic neurons after chronic sympathetic denervation. In the present study, to further examine this hypothesis we evaluated whether manipulation of alpha(2)-adrenoceptor pathways by chronic treatment with the antidepressant drug, desipramine (10 mg/kg i.p. daily, for 21 days), could entail changes in enteric mu- and kappa-opioid receptor pathways in the myenteric plexus of the guinea pig distal colon. In this region, subsensitivity to the inhibitory effect of both UK14,304 and U69,593, respectively alpha(2A)-adrenoceptor and kappa-opioid receptor agonist, on the peristaltic reflex developed after chronic desipramine treatment. On opposite, in these experimental conditions, supersensitivity developed to the inhibitory effect of [D-Ala, N-Me-Phe4-Gly-ol5]-enkephalin (DAMGO), mu-opioid receptor agonist, on propulsion velocity. Immunoreactive expression levels of alpha(2A)-adrenoceptors, mu- and kappa-opioid receptors significantly decreased in the myenteric plexus of the guinea pig colon after chronic desipramine treatment. In these experimental conditions, mRNA levels of alpha(2A)-adrenoceptors, mu- and kappa-opioid receptors significantly increased, excluding a direct involvement of transcription mechanisms in the regulation of receptor expression. Levels of G protein-coupled receptor kinase 2/3 and of inhibitory G(i/o) proteins were significantly reduced in the myenteric plexus after chronic treatment with desipramine. Such changes might represent possible molecular mechanisms involved in the development of subsensitivity to UK14,304 and U69,593 on the efficiency of peristalsis. Alternative molecular mechanisms, including a higher efficiency in the

  15. Modulation by peripheral opioids of basal and distension-stimulated gastric acid secretion in the rat.

    PubMed Central

    Esplugues, J. V.; Barrachina, M. D.; Esplugues, J.

    1992-01-01

    1. The influence of opioids in modulating gastric acid secretory responses has been investigated in the continuously perfused stomach of the anaesthetized rat. 2. Intravenous administration of morphine (0.75-3 mg kg-1) or the peripherally acting enkephalin analogue, BW443C (0.75-3 mg kg-1), substantially augmented acid secretion in basal conditions. These effects were significantly inhibited by the opioid antagonists naloxone (1 mg kg-1) and the peripherally acting N-methylnalorphine (2 mg kg-1). When administered alone, neither opioid antagonist influenced basal acid output. 3. Acid secretory responses to different levels of gastric distension (5-20 cmH2O) were significantly and dose-dependently reduced in rats pretreated with morphine (3 mg kg-1) or BW443C (1.5 mg kg-1). Previous administration of either naloxone or N-methyl nalorphine reversed the inhibitory effects of opioids on gastric acid secretion stimulated by distension. Likewise, blockade of opioid receptors with naloxone or N-methylnalorphine significantly increased acid output induced by distension. 4. Levels of serum gastrin in control animals were not increased after intragastric distension (20 cmH2O). Pretreatment with BW443C (1.5 mg kg-1) did not modify the levels of gastrin present during basal or distension stimulated conditions. 5. Pretreatment with morphine or BW443C did not influence the acid responses to i.v. injection of pentagastrin (100 micrograms kg-1), histamine (5 mg kg-1) or carbachol (4 micrograms kg-1). Acid secretion induced by i.v. administration of 2-deoxy-D-glucose (150 mg kg-1) was reduced in rats pretreated with morphine but not with BW443C. Gastric secretory responses to insulin (0.3 i.u. kg-1) were not modified by i.v. morphine.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1504729

  16. Variations in Opioid Receptor Genes in Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome*

    PubMed Central

    Wachman, Elisha M; Hayes, Marie J; Sherva, Richard; Brown, Mark S; Davis, Jonathan M; Farrer, Lindsay A; Nielsen, David A

    2015-01-01

    Background There is significant variability in the severity of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) due to in-utero opioid exposure. We wanted to determine if single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in key candidate genes contribute to this variability. Methods Full-term opioid-exposed newborns and their mothers (n=86 pairs) were studied. DNA was genotyped for 80 SNPs from 14 genes utilizing a custom designed microarray. The association of each SNP with NAS outcomes was evaluated. Results SNPs in two opioid receptor genes in the infants were associated with worse NAS severity: 1) The PNOC rs732636 A allele (OR=3.8, p=0.004) for treatment with 2 medications and a longer hospital stay (LOS) of 5.8 days (p=0.01), and 2) The OPRK1 rs702764 C allele (OR=4.1, p=0.003) for treatment with 2 medications. The OPRM1 rs1799971 G allele (β= −6.9 days, p=0.02) and COMT rs740603 A allele (β= −5.3 days, p=0.01) were associated with shorter LOS. The OPRD1 rs204076 A allele in the mothers was associated with a longer LOS by 6.6 days (p=0.008). Results were significant point-wise but did not meet the experiment-wide significance level. Conclusions These findings suggest that SNPs in opioid receptor and the PNOC genes are associated with NAS severity. However, further testing in a large sample is warranted. This has important implications for prenatal prediction and personalized treatment regimens for infants at highest risk for severe NAS. PMID:26233486

  17. Variations in opioid receptor genes in neonatal abstinence syndrome.

    PubMed

    Wachman, Elisha M; Hayes, Marie J; Sherva, Richard; Brown, Mark S; Davis, Jonathan M; Farrer, Lindsay A; Nielsen, David A

    2015-10-01

    There is significant variability in the severity of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) due to in-utero opioid exposure. We wanted to determine if single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in key candidate genes contribute to this variability. Full-term opioid-exposed newborns and their mothers (n=86 pairs) were studied. DNA was genotyped for 80 SNPs from 14 genes utilizing a custom designed microarray. The association of each SNP with NAS outcomes was evaluated. SNPs in two opioid receptor genes in the infants were associated with worse NAS severity: (1) The PNOC rs732636 A allele (OR=3.8, p=0.004) for treatment with 2 medications and a longer hospital stay (LOS) of 5.8 days (p=0.01), and (2) The OPRK1 rs702764 C allele (OR=4.1, p=0.003) for treatment with 2 medications. The OPRM1 rs1799971 G allele (β=-6.9 days, p=0.02) and COMT rs740603 A allele (β=-5.3 days, p=0.01) were associated with shorter LOS. The OPRD1 rs204076 A allele in the mothers was associated with a longer LOS by 6.6 days (p=0.008). Results were significant point-wise but did not meet the experiment-wide significance level. These findings suggest that SNPs in opioid receptor and the PNOC genes are associated with NAS severity. However, further testing in a large sample is warranted. This has important implications for prenatal prediction and personalized treatment regimens for infants at highest risk for severe NAS. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. μ Opioid receptor: novel antagonists and structural modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaserer, Teresa; Lantero, Aquilino; Schmidhammer, Helmut; Spetea, Mariana; Schuster, Daniela

    2016-02-01

    The μ opioid receptor (MOR) is a prominent member of the G protein-coupled receptor family and the molecular target of morphine and other opioid drugs. Despite the long tradition of MOR-targeting drugs, still little is known about the ligand-receptor interactions and structure-function relationships underlying the distinct biological effects upon receptor activation or inhibition. With the resolved crystal structure of the β-funaltrexamine-MOR complex, we aimed at the discovery of novel agonists and antagonists using virtual screening tools, i.e. docking, pharmacophore- and shape-based modeling. We suggest important molecular interactions, which active molecules share and distinguish agonists and antagonists. These results allowed for the generation of theoretically validated in silico workflows that were employed for prospective virtual screening. Out of 18 virtual hits evaluated in in vitro pharmacological assays, three displayed antagonist activity and the most active compound significantly inhibited morphine-induced antinociception. The new identified chemotypes hold promise for further development into neurochemical tools for studying the MOR or as potential therapeutic lead candidates.

  19. μ Opioid receptor: novel antagonists and structural modeling

    PubMed Central

    Kaserer, Teresa; Lantero, Aquilino; Schmidhammer, Helmut; Spetea, Mariana; Schuster, Daniela

    2016-01-01

    The μ opioid receptor (MOR) is a prominent member of the G protein-coupled receptor family and the molecular target of morphine and other opioid drugs. Despite the long tradition of MOR-targeting drugs, still little is known about the ligand-receptor interactions and structure-function relationships underlying the distinct biological effects upon receptor activation or inhibition. With the resolved crystal structure of the β-funaltrexamine-MOR complex, we aimed at the discovery of novel agonists and antagonists using virtual screening tools, i.e. docking, pharmacophore- and shape-based modeling. We suggest important molecular interactions, which active molecules share and distinguish agonists and antagonists. These results allowed for the generation of theoretically validated in silico workflows that were employed for prospective virtual screening. Out of 18 virtual hits evaluated in in vitro pharmacological assays, three displayed antagonist activity and the most active compound significantly inhibited morphine-induced antinociception. The new identified chemotypes hold promise for further development into neurochemical tools for studying the MOR or as potential therapeutic lead candidates. PMID:26888328

  20. Induced association of mu opioid (MOP) and type 2 cholecystokinin (CCK2) receptors by novel bivalent ligands

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Yaguo; Akgün, Eyup; Harikumar, Kaleeckal G.; Hopson, Jessika; Powers, Michael D.; Lunzer, Mary M.; Miller, Laurence J.; Portoghese, Philip S.

    2009-01-01

    Both mu opioid (MOP)† and type 2 cholecystokinin (CCK2) receptors are present in areas of the central nervous system that are involved in modulation of pain processing. We conducted bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET) studies on COS cells coexpressing MOP and CCK2 receptors to determine whether receptor heterodimerization is involved in such modulation. These studies revealed the absence of constitutive or monovalent ligand-induced heterodimerization. Heterodimerization of MOP and CCK2 receptors therefore is unlikely to be responsible for the opposing effects between morphine and CCK in the CNS. However, association was induced, as indicated by a positive BRET signal, on exposure of the cells to bivalent ligands containing mu-opioid agonist and CCK2 receptor antagonist pharmacophores linked through spacers containing 16 to 22 atoms, but not with a shorter (9-atom) spacer. These studies demonstrate for the first time that an appropriately designed bivalent ligand is capable of inducing association of G protein-coupled receptors. The finding that opioid tolerance studies with these ligands in mice showed no correlation with the BRET data is consistent with the absence of association of MOP and CCK2 receptors in vivo. PMID:19113864

  1. δ-Opioid receptor agonists inhibit migraine-related hyperalgesia, aversive state and cortical spreading depression in mice

    PubMed Central

    Pradhan, Amynah A; Smith, Monique L; Zyuzin, Jekaterina; Charles, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Background and Purpose Migraine is an extraordinarily common brain disorder for which treatment options continue to be limited. Agonists that activate the δ-opioid receptor may be promising for the treatment of migraine as they are highly effective for the treatment of chronic rather than acute pain, do not induce hyperalgesia, have low abuse potential and have anxiolytic and antidepressant properties. The aim of this study was to investigate the therapeutic potential of δ-opioid receptor agonists for migraine by characterizing their effects in mouse migraine models. Experimental Approach Mechanical hypersensitivity was assessed in mice treated with acute and chronic doses of nitroglycerin (NTG), a known human migraine trigger. Conditioned place aversion to NTG was also measured as a model of migraine-associated negative affect. In addition, we assessed evoked cortical spreading depression (CSD), an established model of migraine aura, in a thinned skull preparation. Key Results NTG evoked acute and chronic mechanical and thermal hyperalgesia in mice, as well as conditioned place aversion. Three different δ-opioid receptor agonists, SNC80, ARM390 and JNJ20788560, significantly reduced NTG-evoked hyperalgesia. SNC80 also abolished NTG-induced conditioned place aversion, suggesting that δ-opioid receptor activation may also alleviate the negative emotional state associated with migraine. We also found that SNC80 significantly attenuated CSD, a model that is considered predictive of migraine preventive therapies. Conclusions and Implications These data show that δ-opioid receptor agonists modulate multiple basic mechanisms associated with migraine, indicating that δ-opioid receptors are a promising therapeutic target for this disorder. PMID:24467301

  2. Deletion of the δ opioid receptor gene impairs place conditioning but preserves morphine reinforcement.

    PubMed

    Le Merrer, Julie; Plaza-Zabala, Ainhoa; Del Boca, Carolina; Matifas, Audrey; Maldonado, Rafael; Kieffer, Brigitte L

    2011-04-01

    Converging experimental data indicate that δ opioid receptors contribute to mediate drug reinforcement processes. Whether their contribution reflects a role in the modulation of drug reward or an implication in conditioned learning, however, has not been explored. In the present study, we investigated the impact of δ receptor gene knockout on reinforced conditioned learning under several experimental paradigms. We assessed the ability of δ receptor knockout mice to form drug-context associations with either morphine (appetitive)- or lithium (aversive)-induced Pavlovian place conditioning. We also examined the efficiency of morphine to serve as a positive reinforcer in these mice and their motivation to gain drug injections, with operant intravenous self-administration under fixed and progressive ratio schedules and at two different doses. Mutant mice showed impaired place conditioning in both appetitive and aversive conditions, indicating disrupted context-drug association. In contrast, mutant animals displayed intact acquisition of morphine self-administration and reached breaking-points comparable to control subjects. Thus, reinforcing effects of morphine and motivation to obtain the drug were maintained. Collectively, the data suggest that δ receptor activity is not involved in morphine reinforcement but facilitates place conditioning. This study reveals a novel aspect of δ opioid receptor function in addiction-related behaviors. Copyright © 2011 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Opioid peptide receptor stimulation reverses beta-adrenergic effects in rat heart cells.

    PubMed

    Xiao, R P; Pepe, S; Spurgeon, H A; Capogrossi, M C; Lakatta, E G

    1997-02-01

    Opioid peptide receptor (OPR) agonists are co-released with the beta-adrenergic receptor (beta-AR) agonist norepinephrine (NE) from nerve terminals in the heart during sympathetic stimulation. Whereas recent studies indicate that OPR and beta-AR coexist on the surface of cardiac myocytes, whether significant "cross talk" occurs between OPR and beta-AR signaling cascades within heart cells is unknown. In the present study we demonstrate a marked effect of delta-OPR stimulation to modulate beta-adrenergic responses in single isolated rat ventricular myocytes. Nanomolar concentrations (10(-8) M) of the OPR agonist leucine enkephalin (LE), a naturally occurring delta-opioid peptide, inhibited NE-induced increases in sarcolemmal L-type Ca2+ current, cytosolic Ca2+ transient, and contraction. The antiadrenergic effect of LE was pertussis toxin sensitive and abolished by naloxone, an opioid receptor antagonist. In contrast, LE was unable to inhibit the positive inotropic effects induced by equipotent concentrations of 8-(4 chlorophenylthio)-adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate, a cell-permeant adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate analog, or by the non-receptor-induced increase in contraction by elevated bathing Ca2+ concentration. These results indicate that an interaction of the OPR and beta-AR systems occurs proximal to activation of the adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate-dependent protein kinase of the beta-AR intracellular signaling pathway. This modulation of beta-adrenergic effects by OPR activation at the myocyte level may have important implications in the regulation of cardiac Ca2+ metabolism and contractility, particularly during the myocardial response to stress.

  4. Pharmacologic Profile of Naloxegol, a Peripherally Acting µ-Opioid Receptor Antagonist, for the Treatment of Opioid-Induced Constipation

    PubMed Central

    Floettmann, Eike; Sostek, Mark; Payza, Kemal; Eldon, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Opioid-induced constipation (OIC) is a common side effect of opioid pharmacotherapy for the management of pain because opioid agonists bind to µ-opioid receptors in the enteric nervous system (ENS). Naloxegol, a polyethylene glycol derivative of naloxol, which is a derivative of naloxone and a peripherally acting µ-opioid receptor antagonist, targets the physiologic mechanisms that cause OIC. Pharmacologic measures of opioid activity and pharmacokinetic measures of central nervous system (CNS) penetration were employed to characterize the mechanism of action of naloxegol. At the human µ-opioid receptor in vitro, naloxegol was a potent inhibitor of binding (Ki = 7.42 nM) and a neutral competitive antagonist (pA2 - 7.95); agonist effects were <10% up to 30 μM and identical to those of naloxone. The oral doses achieving 50% of the maximal effect in the rat for antagonism of morphine-induced inhibition of gastrointestinal transit and morphine-induced antinociception in the hot plate assay were 23.1 and 55.4 mg/kg for naloxegol and 0.69 and 1.14 mg/kg by for naloxone, respectively. In the human colon adenocarcinoma cell transport assay, naloxegol was a substrate for the P-glycoprotein transporter, with low apparent permeability in the apical to basolateral direction, and penetrated the CNS 15-fold slower than naloxone in a rat brain perfusion model. Naloxegol-derived radioactivity was poorly distributed throughout the rat CNS and was eliminated from most tissues within 24 hours. These findings corroborate phase 3 clinical studies demonstrating that naloxegol relieves OIC-associated symptoms in patients with chronic noncancer pain by antagonizing the µ-opioid receptor in the ENS while preserving CNS-mediated analgesia. PMID:28336575

  5. Characterization and visualization of rat and guinea pig brain. kappa. opioid receptors: Evidence for. kappa. sub 1 and. kappa. sub 2 opioid receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Zukin, R.S.; Eghbali, M.; Olive, D.; Unterwald, E.M.; Tempel, A. )

    1988-06-01

    {kappa} opioid receptors ({kappa} receptors) have been characterized in homogenates of guinea pig and rat brain under in vitro binding conditions. {kappa} receptors were labeled by using the tritiated prototypic {kappa} opioid ethylketocyclazocine under conditions in which {mu} and {delta} opioid binding was suppressed. In the case of guinea pig brain membranes, a single population of high-affinity {kappa} opioid receptor sites was observed. In contrast, in the case of rat brain, two populations of {kappa} sites were observed. To test the hypothesis that the high- and low-affinity {kappa} sites represent two distinct {kappa} receptor subtypes, a series of opioids were tested for their abilities to compete for binding to the two sites. U-69,593 and Cambridge 20 selectively displaced the high-affinity {kappa} site in both guinea pig and rat tissue, but were inactive at the rat-brain low-affinity site. Other {kappa} opioid drugs competed for binding to both sites, but with different rank orders of potency. Quantitative light microscopy in vitro autoradiography was used to visualize the neuroanatomical pattern of {kappa} receptors in rat and guinea pig brain. The distribution patterns of the two {kappa} receptor subtypes of rat brain were clearly different. Collectively, these data provide direct evidence for the presence of two {kappa} receptor subtypes; the U-69,593-sensitive, high-affinity {kappa}{sub 1} site predominates in guinea pig brain, and the U-69,593-insensitive, low-affinity {kappa}{sub 2} site predominates in rat brain.

  6. Opioid neurotransmission modulates defensive behavior and fear-induced antinociception in dangerous environments.

    PubMed

    Coimbra, Norberto Cysne; Calvo, Fabrício; Almada, Rafael Carvalho; Freitas, Renato Leonardo; Paschoalin-Maurin, Tatiana; Dos Anjos-Garcia, Tayllon; Elias-Filho, Daoud Hibrahim; Ubiali, Walter Adriano; Lobão-Soares, Bruno; Tracey, Irene

    2017-06-23

    The effects of endogenous opioid peptide antagonists on panic-related responses are controversial. Using elevated mazes and a prey-versus-predator paradigm, we investigated the involvement of the endogenous opioid peptide-mediated system in the modulation of anxiety- and panic attack-induced responses and innate fear-induced antinociception in the present work. Wistar rats were intraperitoneally pretreated with either physiological saline or naloxone at different doses and were subjected to either the elevated plus- or T-maze test or confronted by Crotalus durissus terrificus. The defensive behaviors of the rats were recorded in the presence of the predator and at 24h after the confrontation, when the animals were placed in the experimental enclosure without the rattlesnake. The peripheral non-specific blockade of opioid receptors had a clear anxiolytic-like effect on the rats subjected to the elevated plus-maze but not on those subjected to the elevated T-maze; however, a clear panicolytic-like effect was observed, i.e., the defensive behaviors decreased, and the prey-versus-predator interaction responses evoked by the presence of the rattlesnakes increased. A similar effect was noted when the rats were exposed to the experimental context in the absence of the venomous snake. After completing all tests, the naloxone-treated groups exhibited less anxiety/fear-induced antinociception than the control group, as measured by the tail-flick test. These findings demonstrate the anxiolytic and panicolytic-like effects of opioid receptor blockade. In addition, the fearlessness behavior displayed by preys treated with naloxone at higher doses enhanced the defensive behavioral responses of venomous snakes. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. A role for the mu opioid receptor in the antidepressant effects of buprenorphine.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Shivon A; Erickson, Rebecca L; Browne, Caroline A; Lucki, Irwin

    2017-02-15

    Buprenorphine (BPN), a mixed opioid drug with high affinity for mu (MOR) and kappa (KOR) opioid receptors, has been shown to produce behavioral responses in rodents that are similar to those of antidepressant and anxiolytic drugs. Although recent studies have identified KORs as a primary mediator of BPN's effects in rodent models of depressive-like behavior, the role of MORs in BPN's behavioral effects has not been as well explored. The current studies investigated the role of MORs in mediating conditioned approach behavior in the novelty-induced hypophagia (NIH) test, a behavioral measure previously shown to be sensitive to chronic treatment with antidepressant drugs. The effects of BPN were evaluated in the NIH test 24h post-administration in mice with genetic deletion of the MOR (Oprm1(-/-)) or KOR (Oprk1(-/-)), or after pharmacological blockade with the non-selective opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone and selective MOR antagonist cyprodime. We found that behavioral responses to BPN in the NIH test were blocked in Oprm1(-/-) mice, but not in Oprk1(-/-) mice. Both cyprodime and naltrexone significantly reduced approach latency at doses experimentally proven to antagonize the MOR. In contrast the selective MOR agonist morphine and the selective KOR antagonist nor-BNI were both ineffective. Moreover, antinociceptive studies revealed persistence of the MOR antagonist properties of BPN at 24h post-administration, the period of behavioral reactivity. These data support modulation of MOR activity as a key component of BPN's antidepressant-like effects in the NIH paradigm.

  8. The opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone attenuates reinstatement of amphetamine drug-seeking in the rat.

    PubMed

    Häggkvist, Jenny; Lindholm, Sara; Franck, Johan

    2009-01-30

    Amphetamine produces its rewarding effects by enhancing dopamine transmission in the mesocorticolimbic pathway. Several studies have also suggested the involvement of the endogenous opioid system in mediating the neurochemical and behavioural effects of amphetamine. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of the unselective opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone (NTX) on reinstatement of amphetamine self-administration in the rat. Animals were trained to self-administer amphetamine under a fixed ratio 1 (FR1) schedule (0.1mg/kg/infusion). After receiving a stable drug intake the amphetamine was replaced with saline and the animals went through an extinction period. After reaching the extinction criteria, animals were pre-treated with NTX (0, 0.3, 1.0 and 3.0mg/kg, s.c.) 30min before giving a priming dose of amphetamine (0.5mg/kg s.c). To study the effects of NTX on operant behaviour, animals were trained to lever press for food pellets under a FR1 schedule of reinforcement. Results from the present study shows that a single injection of amphetamine reinstated self-administration behaviour. NTX (0.3 and 1.0mg/kg) significantly attenuated the amphetamine-induced reinstatement but NTX had no effect at any dose studied on food taking behaviour. These results show that NTX attenuates reinstatement of amphetamine self-administration in rats without suppressing general behaviour, implicating a functional role for opioid receptors in modulating amphetamine seeking behaviour.

  9. 17-Cyclopropylmethyl-3,14β-dihydroxy-4,5α-epoxy-6β-(4'-pyridylcarboxamido)morphinan (NAP) Modulating the Mu Opioid Receptor in a Biased Fashion.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Williams, Dwight A; Zaidi, Saheem A; Yuan, Yunyun; Braithwaite, Amanda; Bilsky, Edward J; Dewey, William L; Akbarali, Hamid I; Streicher, John M; Selley, Dana E

    2016-03-16

    Mounting evidence has suggested that G protein-coupled receptors can be stabilized in multiple conformations in response to distinct ligands, which exert discrete functions through selective activation of various downstream signaling events. In accordance with this concept, we report biased signaling of one C6-heterocyclic substituted naltrexamine derivative, namely, 17-cyclopropylmethyl-3,14β-dihydroxy-4,5α-epoxy-6β-(4'-pyridylcarboxamido)morphinan (NAP) at the mu opioid receptor (MOR). NAP acted as a low efficacy MOR partial agonist in the G protein-mediated [(35)S]GTPγS binding assay, whereas it did not significantly induce calcium flux or β-arrestin2 recruitment. In contrast, it potently blocked MOR full agonist-induced β-arrestin2 recruitment and translocation. Additionally, NAP dose-dependently antagonized MOR full agonist-induced intracellular calcium flux and β-arrestin2 recruitment. Further results in an isolated organ bath preparation confirmed that NAP reversed the morphine-induced reduction in colon motility. Ligand docking and dynamics simulation studies of NAP at the MOR provided more supporting evidence for biased signaling of NAP at an atomic level. Due to the fact that NAP is MOR selective and preferentially distributed peripherally upon systemic administration while β-arrestin2 is reportedly required for impairment of intestinal motility by morphine, biased antagonism of β-arrestin2 recruitment by NAP further supports its utility as a treatment for opioid-induced constipation.

  10. Alvimopan: a peripherally acting mu-opioid receptor antagonist.

    PubMed

    Leslie, John B

    2007-09-01

    Postoperative ileus (POI), a transient cessation of coordinated bowel motility after surgery, is an important factor in extending the length of hospital stay. The etiology of POI is multifactorial, and related to both the surgical and anesthetic pathways chosen. Additionally, opioids used to manage non-cancer-related and cancer-related chronic pain may also decrease gastrointestinal (GI) motility resulting in opioid-induced bowel dysfunction (OBD). Postoperative ileus has been associated with prolonged hospital stay and readmission, and thus may increase the overall hospital costs per patient with POI. Alvimopan, a peripherally acting mu-opioid receptor antagonist, accelerated time to GI recovery and reduced postoperative hospital length of stay in phase III POI clinical trials and improved symptoms of OBD compared with placebo in phase II/III clinical trials. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is currently evaluating alvimopan for the management of POI after bowel resection. Alvimopan may provide clinically meaningful benefits to patients and may lower the economic burden of POI to the healthcare system.

  11. In silico design of novel probes for the atypical opioid receptor MRGPRX2.

    PubMed

    Lansu, Katherine; Karpiak, Joel; Liu, Jing; Huang, Xi-Ping; McCorvy, John D; Kroeze, Wesley K; Che, Tao; Nagase, Hiroshi; Carroll, Frank I; Jin, Jian; Shoichet, Brian K; Roth, Bryan L

    2017-05-01

    The primate-exclusive MRGPRX2 G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) has been suggested to modulate pain and itch. Despite putative peptide and small-molecule MRGPRX2 agonists, selective nanomolar-potency probes have not yet been reported. To identify a MRGPRX2 probe, we first screened 5,695 small molecules and found that many opioid compounds activated MRGPRX2, including (-)- and (+)-morphine, hydrocodone, sinomenine, dextromethorphan, and the prodynorphin-derived peptides dynorphin A, dynorphin B, and α- and β-neoendorphin. We used these to select for mutagenesis-validated homology models and docked almost 4 million small molecules. From this docking, we predicted ZINC-3573-a potent MRGPRX2-selective agonist, showing little activity against 315 other GPCRs and 97 representative kinases-along with an essentially inactive enantiomer. ZINC-3573 activates endogenous MRGPRX2 in a human mast cell line, inducing degranulation and calcium release. MRGPRX2 is a unique atypical opioid-like receptor important for modulating mast cell degranulation, which can now be specifically modulated with ZINC-3573.

  12. In silico design of novel probes for the atypical opioid receptor MRGPRX2

    PubMed Central

    Lansu, Katherine; Karpiak, Joel; Liu, Jing; Huang, Xi-Ping; McCorvy, John D.; Kroeze, Wesley K.; Che, Tao; Nagase, Hiroshi; Carroll, Frank I.; Jin, Jian; Shoichet, Brian K.; Roth, Bryan L.

    2016-01-01

    The primate-exclusive MRGPRX2 G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) has been suggested to modulate pain and itch. Despite putative peptide and small molecule MRGPRX2 agonists, selective nanomolar potency probes have not yet been reported. To identify a MRGPRX2 probe, we first screened 5,695 small molecules and found many opioid compounds activated MRGPRX2, including (−)- and (+)-morphine, hydrocodone, sinomenine, dextromethorphan and the prodynorphin-derived peptides, dynorphin A, dynorphin B, and α- and β-neoendorphin. We used these to select for mutagenesis-validated homology models and docked almost 4 million small molecules. From this docking, we predicted ZINC-3573, which represents a potent MRGPRX2-selective agonist, showing little activity against 315 other GPCRs and 97 representative kinases, and an essentially inactive enantiomer. ZINC-3573 activates endogenous MRGPRX2 in a human mast cell line inducing degranulation and calcium release. MRGPRX2 is a unique atypical opioid-like receptor important for modulating mast cell degranulation, which can now be specifically modulated with ZINC-3573. PMID:28288109

  13. Binding-site analysis of opioid receptors using monoclonal anti-idiotypic antibodies

    SciTech Connect

    Conroy, W.G.

    1988-01-01

    Structural relatedness between the variable region of anti-ligand antibodies and opioid binding sites allowed the generation of anti-idiotypic antibodies which recognized opioid receptors. The IgG{sub 3}k antibodies which bound to opioid receptors were obtained when an anti-morphine antiserum was the idiotype. Both antibodies bound to opioid receptors, but only one of these blocked the binding of ({sup 3}H)naloxone. The antibody which did not inhibit the binding of ({sup 3}H)naloxone was itself displaced from the receptor by opioid ligands. The unique binding properties displayed by this antibody indicated that anti-idiotypic antibodies are not always a perfect image of the original ligand, and therefore may be more useful than typical ligands as probes for the receptor. An auto-anti-idiotypic technique was successfully used to obtain anti-opioid receptor antibodies. Another IgG{sub 3}k antibody that blocked the binding of ({sup 3}H)naloxone to rat brain opioid receptors was obtained when a mouse was immunized with naloxone conjugated to bovine serum albumin. These data confirmed that an idiotype-anti-idiotype network which can generate an anti-receptor antibody normally functions when an opioid ligand is introduced into an animal in an immunogenic form.

  14. Opioid Receptors Mediate Direct Predictive Fear Learning: Evidence from One-Trial Blocking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cole, Sindy; McNally, Gavan P.

    2007-01-01

    Pavlovian fear learning depends on predictive error, so that fear learning occurs when the actual outcome of a conditioning trial exceeds the expected outcome. Previous research has shown that opioid receptors, including [mu]-opioid receptors in the ventrolateral quadrant of the midbrain periaqueductal gray (vlPAG), mediate such predictive fear…

  15. Opioid Receptors Mediate Direct Predictive Fear Learning: Evidence from One-Trial Blocking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cole, Sindy; McNally, Gavan P.

    2007-01-01

    Pavlovian fear learning depends on predictive error, so that fear learning occurs when the actual outcome of a conditioning trial exceeds the expected outcome. Previous research has shown that opioid receptors, including [mu]-opioid receptors in the ventrolateral quadrant of the midbrain periaqueductal gray (vlPAG), mediate such predictive fear…

  16. Kappa-opioid receptor-selective dicarboxylic ester-derived salvinorin A ligands.

    PubMed

    Polepally, Prabhakar R; White, Kate; Vardy, Eyal; Roth, Bryan L; Ferreira, Daneel; Zjawiony, Jordan K

    2013-05-15

    Salvinorin A, the active ingredient of the hallucinogenic plant Salvia divinorum is the most potent known naturally occurring hallucinogen and is a selective κ-opioid receptor agonist. To better understand the ligand-receptor interactions, a series of dicarboxylic ester-type of salvinorin A derivatives were synthesized and evaluated for their binding affinity at κ-, δ- and μ-opioid receptors. Most of the analogues show high affinity to the κ-opioid receptor. Methyl malonyl derivative 4 shows the highest binding affinity (Ki=2nM), analogues 5, 7, and 14 exhibit significant affinity for the κ-receptor (Ki=21, 36 and 39nM).

  17. Kappa-Opioid Receptor-Selective Dicarboxylic Ester-Derived Salvinorin A Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Polepally, Prabhakar R.; White, Kate; Vardy, Eyal; Roth, Bryan L.; Ferreira, Daneel; Zjawiony, Jordan K.

    2013-01-01

    Salvinorin A, the active ingredient of the hallucinogenic plant Salvia divinorum is the most potent known naturally occurring hallucinogen and is a selective κ-opioid receptor agonist. To better understand the ligand-receptor interactions, a series of dicarboxylic ester-type of salvinorin A derivatives were synthesized and evaluated for their binding affinity at κ, δ, and μ-opioid receptors. Most of the analogues show high affinity to the κ-opioid receptor. Methyl malonyl derivative 4 shows the highest binding affinity (Ki = 2 nM), analogues 5, 7, and 14 exhibit significant affinity for the κ-receptor (Ki = 21, 36 and 39 nM). PMID:23587424

  18. AM-251 and rimonabant act as direct antagonists at mu-opioid receptors: implications for opioid/cannabinoid interaction studies.

    PubMed

    Seely, Kathryn A; Brents, Lisa K; Franks, Lirit N; Rajasekaran, Maheswari; Zimmerman, Sarah M; Fantegrossi, William E; Prather, Paul L

    2012-10-01

    Mu-opioid and CB1-cannabinoid agonists produce analgesia; however, adverse effects limit use of drugs in both classes. Additive or synergistic effects resulting from concurrent administration of low doses of mu- and CB1-agonists may produce analgesia with fewer side effects. Synergism potentially results from interaction between mu-opioid receptors (MORs) and CB1 receptors (CB1Rs). AM-251 and rimonabant are CB1R antagonist/inverse agonists employed to validate opioid-cannabinoid interactions, presumed to act selectively at CB1Rs. Therefore, the potential for direct action of these antagonists at MORs is rarely considered. This study determined if AM-251 and/or rimonabant directly bind and modulate the function of MORs. Surprisingly, AM-251 and rimonabant, but not a third CB1R inverse agonist AM-281, bind with mid-nanomolar affinity to human MORs with a rank order of affinity (K(i)) of AM-251 (251 nM) > rimonabant (652 nM) > AM281 (2135 nM). AM-251 and rimonabant, but not AM-281, also competitively antagonize morphine induced G-protein activation in CHO-hMOR cell homogenates (K(b) = 719 or 1310 nM, respectively). AM-251 and rimonabant block morphine inhibition of cAMP production, while only AM-251 elicits cAMP rebound in CHO-hMOR cells chronically exposed to morphine. AM-251 and rimonabant (10 mg/kg) attenuate morphine analgesia, whereas the same dose of AM-281 produces little effect. Therefore, in addition to high CB1R affinity, AM-251 and rimonabant bind to MORs with mid-nanomolar affinity and at higher doses may affect morphine analgesia via direct antagonism at MORs. Such CB1-independent of these antagonists effects may contribute to reported inconsistencies when CB1/MOR interactions are examined via pharmacological methods in CB1-knockout versus wild-type mice.

  19. The delta-opioid receptor is sufficient, but not necessary, for spinal opioid-adrenergic analgesic synergy.

    PubMed

    Chabot-Doré, Anne-Julie; Millecamps, Magali; Stone, Laura S

    2013-12-01

    Spinal administration of opioid and α2-adrenergic receptor (α2AR) agonists produces analgesia, and agonists interact synergistically when coadministered. The molecular mechanism underlying this synergy is largely unknown. Pharmacological studies have identified both the delta and the mu-opioid receptors (DOR and MOR) as candidate receptors capable of interacting synergistically with α2AR agonists. However, recent studies attribute the antinociceptive effect of DOR agonists to actions at the MOR, calling the role of DOR in opioid-adrenergic synergy into question. Other studies suggesting that DOR is implicated in morphine antinociception raise the possibility that DOR is nonetheless required for morphine synergy with α2AR agonists. This study aimed to determine whether DOR activation is sufficient and necessary to mediate opioid-adrenergic synergistic interactions in the spinal cord. The antinociceptive effects of clonidine, [D-Ala(2)]-deltorphin II (DeltII), morphine, and [D-Ala(2), N-Me-Phe(4), Gly-ol(5)]-enkephalin (DAMGO) were evaluated using the substance P (SP) behavioral assay in wild type (WT) and DOR-knockout (KO) mice. Opioid-adrenergic drug interactions were evaluated after spinal coadministration of clonidine with DeltII, morphine, or DAMGO. Isobolographic analyses of dose-response curves determined whether interactions were synergistic or additive. The absence of DeltII antinociceptive efficacy in DOR-KO confirmed its selectivity in the SP assay. Although DeltII+clonidine interacted synergistically in WT mice, no interaction with clonidine was observed in DOR-KO mice. Clonidine was synergistic with morphine in both mouse strains. DAMGO did not synergize with clonidine in either strain. These findings confirm that although other opioid receptors can interact synergistically with α2AR agonists, DOR is sufficient for spinal opioid-adrenergic interactions.

  20. Peripheral Sensitization Increases Opioid Receptor Expression and Activation by Crotalphine in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Zambelli, Vanessa Olzon; Fernandes, Ana Carolina de Oliveira; Gutierrez, Vanessa Pacciari; Ferreira, Julio Cesar Batista; Parada, Carlos Amilcar; Mochly-Rosen, Daria; Cury, Yara

    2014-01-01

    Inflammation enhances the peripheral analgesic efficacy of opioid drugs, but the mechanisms involved in this phenomenon have not been fully elucidated. Crotalphine (CRP), a peptide that was first isolated from South American rattlesnake C.d. terrificus venom, induces a potent and long-lasting anti-nociceptive effect that is mediated by the activation of peripheral opioid receptors. Because the high efficacy of CRP is only observed in the presence of inflammation, we aimed to elucidate the mechanisms involved in the CRP anti-nociceptive effect induced by inflammation. Using real-time RT-PCR, western blot analysis and ELISA assays, we demonstrate that the intraplantar injection of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) increases the mRNA and protein levels of the µ- and κ-opioid receptors in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and paw tissue of rats within 3 h of the injection. Using conformation state-sensitive antibodies that recognize activated opioid receptors, we show that PGE2, alone does not increase the activation of these opioid receptors but that in the presence of PGE2, the activation of specific opioid receptors by CRP and selective µ- and κ-opioid receptor agonists (positive controls) increases. Furthermore, PGE2 down-regulated the expression and activation of the δ-opioid receptor. CRP increased the level of activated mitogen-activated protein kinases in cultured DRG neurons, and this increase was dependent on the activation of protein kinase Cζ. This CRP effect was much more prominent when the cells were pretreated with PGE2. These results indicate that the expression and activation of peripheral opioid receptors by opioid-like drugs can be up- or down-regulated in the presence of an acute injury and that acute tissue injury enhances the efficacy of peripheral opioids. PMID:24594607

  1. Opioid, cannabinoid, and transient receptor potential (TRP) systems: effects on body temperature

    PubMed Central

    Rawls, Scott M.; Benamar, Khalid

    2014-01-01

    Cannabinoid and opioid drugs produce marked changes in body temperature. Recent findings have extended our knowledge about the thermoregulatory effects of cannabinoids and opioids, particularly as related to delta opioid receptors, endogenous systems, and transient receptor potential (TRP) channels. Although delta opioid receptors were originally thought to play only a minor role in thermoregulation compared to mu and kappa opioid receptors, their activation has been shown to produce hypothermia in multiple species. Endogenous opioids and cannabinoids also regulate body temperature. Mu and kappa opioid receptors are thought to be in tonic balance, with mu and kappa receptor activation producing hyperthermia and hypothermia, respectively. Endocannabinoids participate in the febrile response, but more studies are needed to determine if a cannabinoid CB1 receptor tone exerts control over basal body temperature. A particularly intense research focus is TRP channels, where TRPV1 channel activation produces hypothermia whereas TRPA1 and TRPM8 channel activation causes hyperthermia. The marked hyperthermia produced by TRPV1 channel antagonists suggests these warm channels tonically control body temperature. A better understanding of the roles of cannabinoid, opioid, and TRP systems in thermoregulation may have broad clinical implications and provide insights into interactions among neurotransmitter systems involved in thermoregulation. PMID:21622235

  2. Kappa opioid receptor signaling protects cartilage tissue against posttraumatic degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Shu; Shkhyan, Ruzanna; Lee, Siyoung; Gullo, Francesca; Petrigliano, Frank A.; Ba, Kai; Wang, Jing

    2017-01-01

    Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, and pain relief with opioid-like drugs is a commonly used therapeutic for osteoarthritic patients. Recent studies published by our group showed that the kappa opioid receptor (KOR) is highly expressed during human development in joint-forming cells. However, the precise role of this receptor in the skeletal system remains elusive. The main aim of the current study was to investigate the role of KOR signaling in synovial and cartilaginous tissues in pathological conditions. Our data demonstrate that KOR null mice exhibit accelerated cartilage degeneration after injury when compared with WT mice. Activation of KOR signaling increased the expression of anabolic enzymes and inhibited cartilage catabolism and degeneration in response to proinflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α. In addition, selective KOR agonists increased joint lubrication via the activation of cAMP/CREB signaling in chondrocytes and synovial cells. Taken together, these results demonstrate direct effects of KOR agonists on cartilage and synovial cells and reveals a protective effect of KOR signaling against cartilage degeneration after injury. In addition to pain control, local administration of dynorphin or other KOR agonist represents an attractive therapeutic approach in patients with early stages of osteoarthritis. PMID:28097228

  3. Inflammatory Pain Promotes Increased Opioid Self-Administration: Role of Dysregulated Ventral Tegmental Area μ Opioid Receptors.

    PubMed

    Hipólito, Lucia; Wilson-Poe, Adrianne; Campos-Jurado, Yolanda; Zhong, Elaine; Gonzalez-Romero, Jose; Virag, Laszlo; Whittington, Robert; Comer, Sandra D; Carlton, Susan M; Walker, Brendan M; Bruchas, Michael R; Morón, Jose A

    2015-09-02

    Pain management in opioid abusers engenders ethical and practical difficulties for clinicians, often resulting in pain mismanagement. Although chronic opioid administration may alter pain states, the presence of pain itself may alter the propensity to self-administer opioids, and previous history of drug abuse comorbid with chronic pain promotes higher rates of opioid misuse. Here, we tested the hypothesis that inflammatory pain leads to increased heroin self-administration resulting from altered mu opioid receptor (MOR) regulation of mesolimbic dopamine (DA) transmission. To this end, the complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA) model of inflammation was used to assess the neurochemical and functional changes induced by inflammatory pain on MOR-mediated mesolimbic DA transmission and on rat intravenous heroin self-administration under fixed ratio (FR) and progressive ratio (PR) schedules of reinforcement. In the presence of inflammatory pain, heroin intake under an FR schedule was increased for high, but attenuated for low, heroin doses with concomitant alterations in mesolimbic MOR function suggested by DA microdialysis. Consistent with the reduction in low dose FR heroin self-administration, inflammatory pain reduced motivation for a low dose of heroin, as measured by responding under a PR schedule of reinforcement, an effect dissociable from high heroin dose PR responding. Together, these results identify a connection between inflammatory pain and loss of MOR function in the mesolimbic dopaminergic pathway that increases intake of high doses of heroin. These findings suggest that pain-induced loss of MOR function in the mesolimbic pathway may promote opioid dose escalation and contribute to opioid abuse-associated phenotypes. This study provides critical new insights that show that inflammatory pain alters heroin intake through a desensitization of MORs located within the VTA. These findings expand our knowledge of the interactions between inflammatory pain and opioid

  4. Differential ontogeny of multiple opioid receptors (mu, delta, and kappa)

    SciTech Connect

    Spain, J.W.; Roth, B.L.; Coscia, C.J.

    1985-03-01

    We investigated the postnatal ontogeny of opioid receptors in rat brain under assay conditions which, when combined with computerized analysis, effectively reflect the developmental profile of high affinity binding to mu, delta, and kappa subpopulations. Concentrations of mu sites were assessed with the selective ligand /sup 3/H-(D-ala2,mePhe4,gly-ol5)enkephalin (DAGO). The other two sites were analyzed in binding assays with less selective radioligands but in the presence of specific unlabeled ligands which suppress cross-reactivity. We utilized /sup 3/H-(D-ala2,D-leu5)enkephalin (DADL) in the presence of 10 nM DAGO to label delta sites and /sup 3/H-ethylketocyclazocine (EKC) in the presence of 100 nM DADL + 100 nM (D-ala2,mePhe4,Met(0)ol5)enkephalin to detect kappa receptors. After birth, the density (femtomoles per milligram of wet weight) of mu sites declined for several days and then rose sharply over the next 2 weeks, increasing 2-fold by adulthood. Delta (delta) sites appeared in the second week postnatal and increased more than 8-fold in the next 2 weeks. Levels of kappa receptors were relatively low at birth and increased slowly (2-fold, overall). Computerized analyses of binding data revealed that DAGO and DADL were binding to single populations of sites throughout the postnatal period. DAGO and EKC affinities did not fluctuate in this period, whereas DADL affinities were low for the first week and then rose to adult levels. In summary, mu, kappa, and delta receptors exhibit differential postnatal developmental profiles. The former two are present at birth, whereas the latter appears in the second week. The postnatal increase for all three sites appear to be preceded by the previously demonstrated emergence of opioid peptides.

  5. Novel approaches for the treatment of psychostimulant and opioid abuse - focus on opioid receptor-based therapies.

    PubMed

    Bailey, Chris P; Husbands, Stephen M

    2014-11-01

    Psychostimulant and opioid addiction are poorly treated. The majority of abstinent users relapse back to drug-taking within a year of abstinence, making 'anti-relapse' therapies the focus of much current research. There are two fundamental challenges to developing novel treatments for drug addiction. First, there are three key stimuli that precipitate relapse back to drug-taking: stress, presentation of drug-conditioned cue, taking a small dose of drug. The most successful novel treatment would be effective against all three stimuli. Second, a large number of drug users are poly-drug users: taking more than one drug of abuse at a time. The ideal anti-addiction treatment would, therefore, be effective against all classes of drugs of abuse. In this review, the authors discuss the clinical need and animal models used to uncover potential novel treatments. There is a very broad range of potential treatment approaches and targets currently being examined as potential anti-relapse therapies. These broadly fit into two categories: 'memory-based' and 'receptor-based' and the authors discuss the key targets here within. Opioid receptors and ligands have been widely studied, and research into how different opioid subtypes affect behaviours related to addiction (reward, dysphoria, motivation) suggests that they are tractable targets as anti-relapse treatments. Regarding opioid ligands as novel 'anti-relapse' medication targets, research suggests that a 'non-selective' approach to targeting opioid receptors will be the most effective.

  6. delta- and mu-opioid receptor mobilization of intracellular calcium in SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells.

    PubMed Central

    Connor, M.; Henderson, G.

    1996-01-01

    ). This treatment did not significantly affect the response of the cells to carbachol. 8. The opioids appeared to elevate [Ca2+]i by mobilizing Ca2+ from intracellular stores. Both DPDPE and DAMGO continued to elevate [Ca2+]i when applied in nominally Ca(2+)-free external buffer or when applied in a buffer containing a cocktail of Ca2+ entry inhibitors. Thapsigargin (100 nM), an agent which discharges intracellular Ca2+ stores, also blocked the opioid elevations of [Ca2+]i. 9. delta and mu Opioids did not appear to mobilize intracellular Ca2+ by modulating the activity of protein kinases. The application of H-89 (10 microM), an inhibitor of protein kinase A, H-7 (100 microM), an inhibitor of protein kinase C, protein kinase A and cyclic GMP-dependent protein kinase, or Bis I, an inhibitor of protein kinase C, did not alter the opioid mobilization of [Ca2+]i. 10. Thus, in SH-SY5Y cells, opioids can mobilize Ca2+ from intracellular stores but they require ongoing muscarinic receptor activation. Opioids do not elevate [Ca2+]i when applied alone. PMID:8789387

  7. Central N/OFQ-NOP Receptor System in Pain Modulation

    PubMed Central

    Kiguchi, Norikazu; Ding, Huiping; Ko, Mei-Chuan

    2016-01-01

    It has been two decades since the peptide, nociceptin/orphanin FQ (N/OFQ), and its cognate (NOP) receptor were discovered. Although NOP receptor activation causes a similar pattern of intracellular actions as mu opioid (MOP) receptors, NOP receptor-mediated pain modulation in rodents are more complicated than MOP receptor activation. In this review, we highlight the functional evidence of spinal, supraspinal, and systemic actions of NOP receptor agonists for regulating pain. In rodents, effects of the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system in spinal and supraspinal sites for modulating pain are bidirectional depending on the doses, assays, and pain modalities. The net effect of systemically administered NOP receptor agonists may depend on relative contribution of spinal and supraspinal actions of the N/OFQ-NOP receptor signaling in rodents under different pain states. In stark contrast, NOP receptor agonists produce only antinociception and antihypersensitivity in spinal and supraspinal regions of nonhuman primates regardless of doses and assays. More importantly, NOP receptor agonists and a few bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists do not exhibit reinforcing effects (abuse liability), respiratory depression, itch pruritus, nor do they delay the gastrointestinal transit function (constipation) in nonhuman primates. Depending upon their intrinsic efficacies for activating NOP and MOP receptors, bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists warrant additional investigation in primates regarding their side effect profiles. Nevertheless, NOP receptor-related agonists display a much wider therapeutic window as compared to that of MOP receptor agonists in primates. Both selective NOP receptor agonists and bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists hold a great potential as effective and safe analgesics without typical opioid-associated side effects in humans. PMID:26920014

  8. Central N/OFQ-NOP Receptor System in Pain Modulation.

    PubMed

    Kiguchi, Norikazu; Ding, Huiping; Ko, Mei-Chuan

    2016-01-01

    Two decades have passed since the peptide, nociceptin/orphanin FQ (N/OFQ), and its cognate (NOP) receptor were discovered. Although NOP receptor activation causes a similar pattern of intracellular actions as mu-opioid (MOP) receptors, NOP receptor-mediated pain modulation in rodents are more complicated than MOP receptor activation. This review highlights the functional evidence of spinal, supraspinal, and systemic actions of NOP receptor agonists for regulating pain. In rodents, effects of the N/OFQ-NOP receptor system in spinal and supraspinal sites for modulating pain are bidirectional depending on the doses, assays, and pain modalities. The net effect of systemically administered NOP receptor agonists may depend on relative contribution of spinal and supraspinal actions of the N/OFQ-NOP receptor signaling in rodents under different pain states. In stark contrast, NOP receptor agonists produce only antinociception and antihypersensitivity in spinal and supraspinal regions of nonhuman primates regardless of doses and assays. More importantly, NOP receptor agonists and a few bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists do not exhibit reinforcing effects (abuse liability), respiratory depression, itch pruritus, nor do they delay the gastrointestinal transit function (constipation) in nonhuman primates. Depending upon their intrinsic efficacies for activating NOP and MOP receptors, bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists warrant additional investigation in primates regarding their side effect profiles. Nevertheless, NOP receptor-related agonists display a much wider therapeutic window as compared to that of MOP receptor agonists in primates. Both selective NOP receptor agonists and bifunctional NOP/MOP receptor agonists hold great potential as effective and safe analgesics without typical opioid-associated side effects in humans.

  9. Unexpected Opioid Activity Profiles of Analogs of the Novel Peptide Kappa Opioid Receptor Ligand CJ-15,208

    PubMed Central

    Aldrich, Jane V.; Kulkarni, Santosh S.; Senadheera, Sanjeewa N.; Ross, Nicolette C.; Reilley, Kate J.; Eans, Shainnel O.; Ganno, Michelle L.; Murray, Thomas F.; McLaughlin, Jay P.

    2013-01-01

    An alanine scan was performed on the novel kappa opioid receptor (KOR) peptide ligand CJ-15,208 to determine which residues contribute to the potent in vivo agonist activity observed for the parent peptide. These cyclic tetrapeptides were synthesized by a combination of solid phase peptide synthesis of the linear precursors, followed by cyclization in solution. Like the parent peptide, each of the analogs exhibited agonist activity and KOR antagonist activity in an antinociceptive assay in vivo. Unlike the parent peptide, the agonist activity of the potent analogs was mediated predominantly if not exclusively by mu opioid receptors (MOR). Thus analogs 2 and 4, in which one of the phenylalanine residues was replaced by alanine, exhibited both potent MOR agonist activity and KOR antagonist activity in vivo. These peptides represent novel lead compounds for the development of peptide-based opioid analgesics. PMID:21761566

  10. Oxycodone combined with opioid receptor antagonists: efficacy and safety.

    PubMed

    Davis, Mellar; Goforth, Harold W; Gamier, Pam

    2013-05-01

    A mu receptor antagonist combined with oxycodone (OXY) may improve pain control, reduce physical tolerance and withdrawal, minimizing opioid-related bowel dysfunction and act as an abuse deterrent. The authors cover the use of OXY plus ultra-low-dose naltrexone for analgesia and the use of sustained-release OXY plus sustained-release naloxone to reduce the opioid bowel syndrome. The authors briefly describe the use of sustained-release OXY and naltrexone pellets as a drug abuse deterrent formulation. Combinations of ultra-low-dose naltrexone plus OXY have been in separate trials involved in patients with chronic pain from osteoarthritis and idiopathic low back pain. High attrition and marginal differences between ultra-low-dose naltrexone plus OXY and OXY led to discontinuation of development. Prolonged-release (PR) naloxone combined with PR OXY demonstrates a consistent reduction in opioid-related bowel dysfunction in multiple randomized controlled trials. However, gastrointestinal side effects, including diarrhea, were increased in several trials with the combination compared with PR OXY alone. Analgesia appeared to be maintained although non-inferiority to PR OXY is not formally established. There were flaws to trial design and safety monitoring. Naltrexone has been combined with OXY in individual pellets encased in a capsule. This combination has been reported in a Phase II trial and is presently undergoing Phase III studies. Due to the lack of efficacy the combination of altered low-dose naltrexone with oxycodone should cease in development. The combination of sustained release oxycodone plus naloxone reduces constipation with a consistent benefit. Safety has been suboptimally evaluated which is a concern. Although the drug is commercially available in several countries, ongoing safety monitoring particularly high doses would be important.

  11. Nicotine enhancement and reinforcer devaluation: Interaction with opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Kirshenbaum, Ari P; Suhaka, Jesse A; Phillips, Jessie L; Voltolini de Souza Pinto, Maiary

    In rats, nicotine enhances responding maintained by non-pharmacological reinforcers, and discontinuation of nicotine devalues those same reinforcers. The goal of this study was to assess the interaction of nicotine and opioid receptors and to evaluate the degree to which nicotine enhancement and nicotine-induced devaluation are related to opioid activation. Nicotine (0.4mg/kg), or nicotine plus naloxone (0.3 or 3.0mg/kg), was delivered to rats prior to progressive ratio (PR) schedule sessions in which sucrose was used as a reinforcer. PR-schedule responding was assessed during ten daily sessions of drug delivery, and for three post-dosing days/sessions. Control groups for this investigation included a saline-only condition, and naloxone-only (0.3 or 3.0mg/kg) conditions. When administered in conjunction with nicotine, both naloxone doses attenuated nicotine enhancement of the sucrose reinforcer, and the combination of the larger dose of naloxone (3.0mg/kg) with nicotine produced significant impairments in sucrose reinforced responding. When administered alone, neither dose of naloxone (0.3 & 3.0mg/kg) significantly altered responding in comparison to saline. Furthermore, when dosing was discontinued after ten once-daily doses, all nicotine groups (nicotine-only and nicotine+naloxone combination) demonstrated significant decreases in sucrose reinforcement compared to the saline group. Although opioid antagonism attenuated reinforcement enhancement by nicotine, it did not prevent reinforcer devaluation upon discontinuation of nicotine dosing, and the higher dose of naloxone (3.0mg/kg) produced decrements upon discontinuation on its own in the absence of nicotine. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Differential Effect of Membrane Cholesterol Removal on μ- and δ-Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Levitt, Erica S.; Clark, Mary J.; Jenkins, Paul M.; Martens, Jeffrey R.; Traynor, John R.

    2009-01-01

    According to the lipid raft theory, the plasma membrane contains small domains enriched in cholesterol and sphingolipid, which may serve as platforms to organize membrane proteins. Using methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MβCD) to deplete membrane cholesterol, many G protein-coupled receptors have been shown to depend on putative lipid rafts for proper signaling. Here we examine the hypothesis that treatment of HEK293 cells stably expressing FLAG-tagged μ-opioid receptors (HEK FLAG-μ) or δ-opioid receptors (HEK FLAG-δ) with MβCD will reduce opioid receptor signaling to adenylyl cyclase. The ability of the μ-opioid agonist [d-Ala2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly5-ol]enkephalin to acutely inhibit adenylyl cyclase or to cause sensitization of adenylyl cyclase following chronic treatment was attenuated with MβCD. These effects were due to removal of cholesterol, because replenishment of cholesterol restored [d-Ala2,N-Me-Phe4,Gly5-ol]enkephalin responses back to control values, and were confirmed in SH-SY5Y cells endogenously expressing μ-opioid receptors. The effects of MβCD may be due to uncoupling of the μ receptor from G proteins but were not because of decreases in receptor number and were not mimicked by cytoskeleton disruption. In contrast to the results in HEK FLAG-μ cells, MβCD treatment of HEK FLAG-δ cells had no effect on acute inhibition or sensitization of adenylyl cyclase by δ-opioid agonists. The differential responses of μ- and δ-opioid agonists to cholesterol depletion suggest that μ-opioid receptors are more dependent on cholesterol for efficient signaling than δ receptors and can be partly explained by localization of μ- but not δ-opioid receptors in cholesterol- and caveolin-enriched membrane domains. PMID:19520863

  13. Functional coupling, desensitization and internalization of virally expressed mu opioid receptors in cultured dorsal root ganglion neurons from mu opioid receptor knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Walwyn, W M; Keith, D E; Wei, W; Tan, A M; Xie, C W; Evans, C J; Kieffer, B L; Maidment, N T

    2004-01-01

    Although mu opioid receptors desensitize in various cell lines in vitro, the relationship of this change in signaling efficacy to the development of tolerance in vivo remains uncertain. It is clear that a system is needed in which functional mu opioid receptor expression is obtained in appropriate neurons so that desensitization can be measured, manipulated, and mutated receptors expressed in this environment. We have developed a recombinant system in which expression of a flag-tagged mu opioid receptor is returned to dorsal root ganglia neurons from mu opioid receptor knockout mice in vitro. Flow cytometry analysis showed that adenoviral-mediated expression of the amino-terminal flag-tagged mu opioid receptor in neurons resulted in approximately 1.3x10(6) receptors/cell. Many mu opioid receptor cell lines express a similar density of receptors but this is approximately 7x greater than the number of endogenous receptors expressed by matched wild-type neurons. Inhibition of the high voltage-activated calcium currents in dorsal root ganglia neurons by the mu agonist, D-Ala(2), N-MePhe(4), Gly(5)-ol-enkephalin (DAMGO), was not different between the endogenous and flag-tagged receptor at several concentrations of DAMGO used. Both receptors desensitized equally over the first 6 h of DAMGO pre-incubation, but after 24 h the response of the endogenous receptor to DAMGO had desensitized further than the flag- tagged receptor (71+/-3 vs 29+/-7% respectively; P<0.002), indicating less desensitization in neurons expressing a higher density of receptor. Using flow cytometry to quantify the percentage of receptors remaining on the neuronal cell surface, the flag-tagged receptor internalized by 17+/-1% after 20 min and 55+/-2% after 24 h of DAMGO. These data indicate that this return of function model in neurons recapitulates many of the characteristics of endogenous mu opioid receptor function previously identified in non-neuronal cell lines.

  14. μ-Opioid receptor activation and noradrenaline transport inhibition by tapentadol in rat single locus coeruleus neurons.

    PubMed

    Sadeghi, Mahsa; Tzschentke, Thomas M; Christie, MacDonald J

    2015-01-01

    Tapentadol is a novel analgesic that combines moderate μ-opioid receptor agonism and noradrenaline reuptake inhibition in a single molecule. Both mechanisms of action are involved in producing analgesia; however, the potency and efficacy of tapentadol in individual neurons has not been characterized. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of G-protein-coupled inwardly rectifying K(+) (KIR 3.x) currents were made from rat locus coeruleus neurons in brain slices to investigate the potency and relative efficacy of tapentadol and compare its intrinsic activity with other clinically used opioids. Tapentadol showed agonist activity at μ receptors and was approximately six times less potent than morphine with respect to KIR 3.x current modulation. The intrinsic activity of tapentadol was lower than [Met]enkephalin, morphine and oxycodone, but higher than buprenorphine and pentazocine. Tapentadol inhibited the noradrenaline transporter (NAT) with potency similar to that at μ receptors. The interaction between these two mechanisms of action was additive in individual LC neurons. Tapentadol displays similar potency for both µ receptor activation and NAT inhibition in functioning neurons. The intrinsic activity of tapentadol at the μ receptor lies between that of buprenorphine and oxycodone, potentially explaining the favourable profile of side effects, related to μ receptors. This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2. © 2013 The British Pharmacological Society.

  15. MicroRNA 339 down-regulates μ-opioid receptor at the post-transcriptional level in response to opioid treatment

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qifang; Hwang, Cheol Kyu; Zheng, Hui; Wagley, Yadav; Lin, Hong-Yiou; Kim, Do Kyung; Law, Ping-Yee; Loh, Horace H.; Wei, Li-Na

    2013-01-01

    μ-Opioid receptor (MOR) level is directly related to the function of opioid drugs, such as morphine and fentanyl. Although agonist treatment generally does not affect transcription of mor, previous studies suggest that morphine can affect the translation efficiency of MOR transcript via microRNAs (miRNAs). On the basis of miRNA microarray analyses of the hippocampal total RNA isolated from mice chronically treated with μ-opioid agonists, we found a miRNA (miR-339-3p) that was consistently and specifically increased by morphine (2-fold) and by fentanyl (3.8-fold). miR-339-3p bound to the MOR 3′-UTR and specifically suppressed reporter activity. Suppression was blunted by adding miR-339-3p inhibitor or mutating the miR-339-3p target site. In cells endogenously expressing MOR, miR-339-3p inhibited the production of MOR protein by destabilizing MOR mRNA. Up-regulation of miR-339-3p by fentanyl (EC50=0.75 nM) resulted from an increase in primary miRNA transcript. Mapping of the miR-339-3p primary RNA and its promoter revealed that the primary miR-339-3p was embedded in a noncoding 3′-UTR region of an unknown host gene and was coregulated by the host promoter. The identified promoter was activated by opioid agonist treatment (10 nM fentanyl or 10 μM morphine), a specific effect blocked by the opioid antagonist naloxone (10 μM). Taken together, these results suggest that miR-339-3p may serve as a negative feedback modulator of MOR signals by regulating intracellular MOR biosynthesis.—Wu, Q., Hwang, C. K., Zheng, H., Wagley, Y., Lin, H.-Y., Kim, D. K., Law, P.-Y., Loh, H. H., Wei, L.-N. MicroRNA 339 downregulates mu opioid receptor at the post-transcriptional level in response to opioid treatment. PMID:23085997

  16. Functional Characteristics of the Naked Mole Rat μ-Opioid Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Roth, Clarisse A.

    2013-01-01

    While humans and most animals respond to µ-opioid receptor (MOR) agonists with analgesia and decreased aggression, in the naked mole rat (NMR) opioids induce hyperalgesia and severe aggression. Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the human mu-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1) can underlie altered behavioral responses to opioids. Therefore, we hypothesized that the primary structure of the NMR MOR may differ from other species. Sequencing of the NMR oprm1 revealed strong homology to other mammals, but exposed three unique amino acids that might affect receptor-ligand interactions. The NMR and rat oprm1 sequences were cloned into mammalian expression vectors and transfected into HEK293 cells. Radioligand binding and 3'-5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) enzyme immunoassays were used to compare opioid binding and opioid-mediated cAMP inhibition. At normalized opioid receptor protein levels we detected significantly lower [3H]DAMGO binding to NMR compared to rat MOR, but no significant difference in DAMGO-induced cAMP inhibition. Strong DAMGO-induced MOR internalization was detectable using radioligand binding and confocal imaging in HEK293 cells expressing rat or NMR receptor, while morphine showed weak or no effects. In summary, we found minor functional differences between rat and NMR MOR suggesting that other differences e.g. in anatomical distribution of MOR underlie the NMR's extreme reaction to opioids. PMID:24312175

  17. Ghrelin receptor agonist, GHRP-2, produces antinociceptive effects at the supraspinal level via the opioid receptor in mice.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Ping; Li, Shu; Zheng, Yue-hui; Liu, Fu-Yan; Wang, Jing-lei; Zhang, Da-lei; Wei, Jie

    2014-05-01

    GHRP-2 is a synthetic agonist of ghrelin receptor. GHRP-2 has similar physiological functions with ghrelin. In our previous study, ghrelin (i.c.v.) could induce analgesic effect through an interaction with GHS-R1α and with the central opioid system in the acute pain in mice. To date, the function of GHRP-2 in pain processing was not understood. Therefore the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of GHRP-2 on pain modulation at supraspinal level in mice using the tail immersion test. Intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) administration of GHRP-2 (0.1, 0.3, 1, 3 and 10 nmol/L) produced a concentration- and time-related antinociceptive effect. This effect could be fully antagonized by GHS-R1α antagonist [d-Lys(3)]-GHRP-6, indicating that the analgesic effect induced by GHRP-2 is mediated through the activation of GHS-R1α. Interestingly, naloxone, naltrindole and nor-binaltorphimine, but not β-funaltrexamine, could also block the analgesic effect markedly, suggesting that δ- and κ-opioid receptor is involved in the analgesic response evoked by GHRP-2. Moreover, i.c.v. administration of GHRP-2 potentiated the analgesic effect induced by morphine (i.c.v., 1 nmol/L) and this potentiated effect could not be reversed by [d-Lys(3)]-GHRP-6. Thus these findings may be a new strategy on investigating the interaction between ghrelin system and opioids on pain modulation. Furthermore, GHRP-2 may be a promising peptide for developing new analgesic drugs.

  18. Opioid Receptor Antagonists in the Treatment of Alcoholism.

    PubMed

    Serecigni, Josep Guardia

    2015-09-29

    Objetivos: A partir de los recientes progresos en la farmacoterapia del alcoholismo, hemos efectuado una revisión sobre los fármacos antagonistas de los receptores opioides, que tienen aprobada la indicación para el tratamiento del alcoholismo, como son naltrexona y nalmefeno. Metodología: Hemos revisado más de 100 publicaciones sobre péptidos y receptores opioides, el efecto de los fármacos antagonistas de los receptores opioides sobre el consumo de alcohol, tanto en animales como en humanos, tanto en el laboratorio como para el tratamiento del alcoholismo. También se describen las características farmacológicas de naltrexona y de nalmefeno y su utilidad en la práctica clínica. Resultados: Múltiples evidencias han demostrado la eficacia de naltrexona y nalmefeno para reducir el consumo de alcohol, tanto en animales de laboratorio como también en personas estudiadas en situación de bar experimental, aunque debido al diferente perfil receptorial, nalmefeno ha sido relacionado con una mayor eficacia para la reducción del consumo de alcohol, en ratas que presentan dependencia del alcohol. Además, un gran número de ensayos clínicos controlados han demostrado la eficacia de naltrexona para la prevención de recaídas, en personas que presentan un trastorno por dependencia del alcohol. Ensayos clínicos controlados recientes han demostrado la eficacia de nalmefeno “a demanda” para reducir el consumo de alcohol, en personas que presentan un trastorno por dependencia del alcohol de baja gravedad. Conclusiones: Tanto naltrexona como nalmefeno han demostrado ser fármacos seguros, bien tolerados, de manejo sencillo, y eficaces para el tratamiento del trastorno por dependencia del alcohol, (actualmente llamado trastorno por consumo de alcohol). A partir de recientes ensayos clínicos controlados se ha comprobado que nalmefeno produce una reducción significativa del consumo de alcohol, lo cual supone un nuevo objetivo que amplía las posibilidades de

  19. Hormonal responses to opioid receptor blockade: during rest and exercise in cold and hot environments.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, David W; Hatfield, Bradley D

    2006-05-01

    Opioid receptors appear to modulate a variety of physiological and metabolic homeostatic responses to stressors such as exercise and thermally extreme environments. To more accurately determine the role of the naloxone (NAL) sensitive opioid receptor system during rest and exercise, subjects were subjected to concomitant environmental thermal stress. Fifteen untrained men rested or performed low intensity (60% VO2peak) or high intensity (80% VO2peak) exercise on a cycle ergometer for 60 min in an environmental chamber during cold (0 degrees C) hot (35 degrees C) air exposure while receiving an infusion of normal saline (SAL) or NAL (0.1 mg kg(-1)). Plasma adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH), immunoreactive beta-endorphin (IBE), cortisol and growth hormone were measured at baseline and every 15 min while in the chamber. Time to exhaustion was significantly reduced during high intensity exercise in the heat (P<0.0001). NAL significantly (P=0.0004) reduced the time to exhaustion (38.3+/-2.1 min) during high intensity exercise in the heat compared to SAL (49.4+/-2.1 min). ACTH and IBE increased during hot conditions and cold attenuated this response. Plasma concentrations of IBE, ACTH, and growth hormone increased significantly with NAL during high intensity exercise in the heat compared to SAL. Cold attenuated the response of ACTH, IBE and cortisol to NAL. NAL administration exaggerates plasma hormone concentration during high intensity exercise in the heat, but not cold. These results support a regulatory effect of the opioid receptor system on physiological responses during exercise in thermally stressful environments. Future research should be directed to more clearly defining the effect of environmental temperature on the mechanism of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal hormonal release during exercise and hot environmental temperatures.

  20. Mu opioid receptors are in discrete hippocampal interneuron subpopulations.

    PubMed

    Drake, Carrie T; Milner, Teresa A

    2002-01-01

    In the rat hippocampal formation, application of mu opioid receptor (MOR) agonists disinhibits principal cells, promoting excitation-dependent processes such as epileptogenesis and long-term potentiation. However, the precise location of MORs in particular inhibitory circuits, has not been determined, and the roles of MORs in endogenous functioning are unclear. To address these issues, the distribution of MOR-like immunoreactivity (-li) was examined in several populations of inhibitory hippocampal neurons in the CA1 region using light and electron microscopy. We found that MOR-li was present in many parvalbumin-containing basket cells, but absent from cholecystokinin-labeled basket cells. MOR-li was also commonly in interneurons containing somatostatin-li or neuropeptide Y-li that resembled the "oriens-lacunosum-moleculare" (O-LM) interneurons innervating pyramidal cell distal dendrites. Finally, MOR-li was in some vasoactive intestinal peptide- or calretinin-containing profiles resembling interneurons that primarily innervate other interneurons. These findings indicate that MOR-containing neurons form a neurochemically and functionally heterogeneous subset of hippocampal GABAergic neurons. MORs are most frequently on interneurons that are specialized to inhibit pyramidal cells, and are on a limited number of interneurons that target other interneurons. Moreover, the distribution of MORs to different neuronal types in several laminae, some relatively far from endogenous opioids, suggests normal functional roles that are different from the actions seen with exogenous agonists such as morphine.

  1. A6V polymorphism of the human μ-opioid receptor decreases signalling of morphine and endogenous opioids in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Knapman, Alisa; Santiago, Marina; Connor, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Background and Purpose Polymorphisms of the μ opioid receptor (MOPr) may contribute to the variation in responses to opioid drugs in clinical and unregulated situations. The A6V variant of MOPr (MOPr-A6V) is present in up to 20% of individuals in some populations, and may be associated with heightened susceptibility to drug abuse. There are no functional studies examining the acute signalling of MOPr-A6V in vitro, so we investigated potential functional differences between MOPr and MOPr-A6V at several signalling pathways using structurally distinct opioid ligands. Experimental Approach CHO and AtT-20 cells stably expressing MOPr and MOPr-A6V were used. AC inhibition and ERK1/2 phosphorylation were assayed in CHO cells; K channel activation was assayed in AtT-20 cells. Key Results Buprenorphine did not inhibit AC or stimulate ERK1/2 phosphorylation in CHO cells expressing MOPr-A6V, but buprenorphine activation of K channels in AtT-20 cells was preserved. [D-Ala2, N-MePhe4, Gly-ol]-enkephalin, morphine and β-endorphin inhibition of AC was significantly reduced via MOPr-A6V, as was signalling of all opioids to ERK1/2. However, there was little effect of the A6V variant on K channel activation. Conclusions and Implications Signalling to AC and ERK via the mutant MOPr-A6V was decreased for many opioids, including the clinically significant drugs morphine, buprenorphine and fentanyl, as well endogenous opioids. The MOPr-A6V variant is common and this compromised signalling may affect individual responses to opioid therapy, while the possible disruption of the endogenous opioid system may contribute to susceptibility to substance abuse. PMID:25521224

  2. Structural insights into µ-opioid receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Weijiao; Manglik, Aashish; Venkatakrishnan, A J; Laeremans, Toon; Feinberg, Evan N; Sanborn, Adrian L; Kato, Hideaki E; Livingston, Kathryn E; Thorsen, Thor S; Kling, Ralf C; Granier, Sébastien; Gmeiner, Peter; Husbands, Stephen M; Traynor, John R; Weis, William I; Steyaert, Jan; Dror, Ron O; Kobilka, Brian K

    2015-08-20

    Activation of the μ-opioid receptor (μOR) is responsible for the efficacy of the most effective analgesics. To shed light on the structural basis for μOR activation, here we report a 2.1 Å X-ray crystal structure of the murine μOR bound to the morphinan agonist BU72 and a G protein mimetic camelid antibody fragment. The BU72-stabilized changes in the μOR binding pocket are subtle and differ from those observed for agonist-bound structures of the β2-adrenergic receptor (β2AR) and the M2 muscarinic receptor. Comparison with active β2AR reveals a common rearrangement in the packing of three conserved amino acids in the core of the μOR, and molecular dynamics simulations illustrate how the ligand-binding pocket is conformationally linked to this conserved triad. Additionally, an extensive polar network between the ligand-binding pocket and the cytoplasmic domains appears to play a similar role in signal propagation for all three G-protein-coupled receptors.

  3. Endorphins and food intake: kappa opioid receptor agonists and hyperphagia.

    PubMed

    Cooper, S J; Jackson, A; Kirkham, T C

    1985-11-01

    Evidence from studies which utilise either opiate receptor agonists and antagonists strongly indicate a role for endorphinergic mechanisms in the control of feeding responses. Two means by which these compounds may exert an effect on feeding can be singled-out. Firstly, emerging evidence suggests that the process of achieving satiety (terminating a meal, or choice of a commodity) may be accelerated following treatments with opiate receptor antagonists. Secondly, the preference for highly palatable solutions (sweet solutions have received most attention) in two-bottle tests is blocked after injection of opiate receptor antagonists. This finding has been interpreted in terms of the abolition of the reward or incentive quality associated with the particularly attractive flavour. These two mechanisms of action may represent two aspects of a single, fundamental process. Following an introduction to rat urination model of in vivo kappa agonist activity, the consistent effect of several kappa agonists (including the highly selective U-50,488H) to stimulate food consumption is described. Recognising that members of the dynorphin group of endogenous opioid peptides are kappa receptor ligands, some with a high degree of selectivity, and the evidence the dynorphins and neo-endorphins produce hyperphagia in rats is particularly interesting. Such lines of evidence lead to the hypothesis that peptides of the dynorphin group may act endogenously to promote the expression of normal feeding behaviour.

  4. Peripheral administration of a μ-opioid receptor agonist DAMGO suppresses the anxiolytic and stimulatory effects of caffeine.

    PubMed

    Sudakov, S K; Nazarova, G A; Alekseeva, E V; Kolpakov, A A

    2015-01-01

    We studied the possibility of modulation of the stimulatory and anxiolytic effects of caffeine by activation of μ-opioid receptors in the gastrointestinal tract. Caffeine in a dose of 10 mg/kg (but not in a dose of 100 mg/kg) had a strong anxiolytic and psychostimulant effect. This effect was manifested in a significant increase in the time spent in the open arms of the elevated plus-maze, elevation of locomotor activity, and stimulation of metabolism. Administration of DAMGO to animals receiving caffeine in a dose of 10 mg/kg abolished the anxiolytic and psychostimulant effects of caffeine. By contrast, administration of DAMGO to rats receiving caffeine in a dose of 100 mg/kg had the anxiolytic effect. Activation of peripheral μ-opioid receptors is followed by the inhibition of the central μ-opioid system. We observed a decrease in the number of μ-opioid receptors in the midbrain and cerebral cortex and inhibition of β-endorphin release from nerve ending of the cingulate cortex in rats. These changes are probably followed by activation of the adenosine system in the brain. Caffeine dose should be increased to achieve the effect. Therefore, the anxiolytic and stimulatory effects of caffeine in a dose of 10 mg/kg are abolished under these conditions. By contrast, the anxiolytic effect of caffeine in a dose of 100 mg/kg (not observed under normal conditions) develops after this treatment.

  5. Mu and kappa opioid receptors of the periaqueductal gray stimulate and inhibit thermogenesis, respectively, during psychological stress in rats.

    PubMed

    Cristina-Silva, Caroline; Martins, Victor; Gargaglioni, Luciane H; Bícego, Kênia C

    2017-04-04

    The periaqueductal gray matter (PAG) is rich in mu and kappa opioid receptors, and this system is involved in thermoregulation, analgesia, and defensive behaviors. No study approached the involvement of the PAG opioids in body temperature (Tb) regulation during psychological stress such as restraint. Because activation of mu and kappa receptors increases and reduces Tb, respectively, we tested the hypothesis that they exert excitatory and inhibitory modulation, respectively, of the restraint-induced fever in rats. To this end, Tb, heat loss index (HLI, inference for peripheral vasoconstriction/vasodilation), and oxygen consumption (inference for thermogenesis) were monitored in unanesthetized rats, restrained or unrestrained, before and after intra-PAG microinjection of the selective mu opioid receptor antagonist (D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Arg-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH2 cyclic, CTAP; 1 and 10 μg/100 nL) or the selective kappa opioid receptor antagonist (nor-binaltorphimine dihydrochloride, nor-BNI; 1 and 4 μg/100 nL) or saline (100 nL). CTAP and nor-BNI did not change the Tb or HLI of euthermic animals. During restraint, Tb increased (1.0 ± 0.1 °C) in all groups; however, this effect was lower in those animals treated with CTAP and higher in animals treated with nor-BNI. The HLI decreased during restraint and increased after animals were released, but this response was not affected by any treatment. Restraint stress increased oxygen consumption (35.9 ± 3.9% elevation), but this response was diminished by CTAP and overstimulated by nor-BNI. Confirming our hypothesis, the results indicate that the mu and kappa opioid receptors in the PAG of rats play a pyrogenic and antipyretic role, respectively, during fever induced by restraint by affecting the thermogenic but not the heat conservation effector.

  6. Opioid receptor approaches for the development of medications for pregnant women.

    PubMed

    Szeto, H H

    1995-01-01

    It is proposed that receptor selectivity may be used as a rational approach in the design and development of new opioid agents for use in pregnant women. While minimizing placental drug transfer will only reduce the direct effects of opioid drugs on the fetus, the use of selective opioid drugs may, in addition, reduce the indirect effects of opioids secondary to alterations in maternal and placental physiology. By taking advantage of the differential ontogeny of the different receptor subtypes, it may even be able to prevent significant drug effects on the fetus despite considerable placental transfer. The combined use of maternal-fetal pharmacokinetics and receptor selectivity may lead to the development of superior opioid drugs with minimal adverse effects on the mother and fetus. Finally, the approaches proposed here may be suitable for the development of other agents that may be useful in the treatment of pregnant addicts and their infants.

  7. Cross-talk of opioid peptide receptor and beta-adrenergic receptor signalling in the heart.

    PubMed

    Pepe, Salvatore; van den Brink, Olivier W V; Lakatta, Edward G; Xiao, Rui-Ping

    2004-08-15

    Opioid peptide receptor (OPR) and beta-adrenergic receptor (beta-AR) are well-established members of G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily and are involved in regulating cardiac contractility, energy metabolism, myocyte survival or death. OPRs are typical Gi/Go-coupled receptors and activated by opioid peptides derived from the endorphin, dynorphin and enkephalin families, whereas beta-AR stimulated by catecholamines is the model system for Gs-coupled receptors. While it is widely accepted that beta-AR stimulation serves as the most powerful means to increase cardiac output in response to stress or exercise, we have only begun to appreciate functional roles of OPR stimulation in regulating cardiovascular performance. Cardiovascular regulatory effects of endogenous opioids were initially considered to originate from the central nervous system and involved the pre-synaptic co-release of norepinephrine with enkephalin from sympathetic neuronal terminals in the heart. However, opioid peptides of myocardial origin have been shown to play important roles in local regulation of the heart. Notably, OPR stimulation not only inhibits cardiac excitation-contraction coupling, but also protects the heart against hypoxic and ischemic injury via activation of Gi-mediated signalling pathways. Further, OPRs functionally and physically cross-talk with beta-ARs via multiple hierarchical mechanisms, including heterodimerization of these receptors, counterbalance of functional opposing G protein signalling, and interface at downstream signalling events. As a result, the beta-AR-mediated positive inotropic effect and increase in cAMP are markedly attenuated by OPR activation in isolated cardiomyocytes as well as sympathectomized intact rat hearts. This brief review will focus on the interaction between beta-AR and OPR and its potential physiological and pathophysiological relevance in the heart. Copryright 2004 European Society of Cardiology

  8. Basal μ-opioid receptor availability in the amygdala predicts the inhibition of pain-related brain activity during heterotopic noxious counter-stimulation.

    PubMed

    Piché, Mathieu; Watanabe, Nobuhiro; Sakata, Muneyuki; Oda, Keiichi; Toyohara, Jun; Ishii, Kenji; Ishiwata, Kiichi; Hotta, Harumi

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the association between the magnitude of anti-nociceptive effects induced by heterotopic noxious counter-stimulation (HNCS) and the basal μ-opioid receptor availability in the amygdala. In 8 healthy volunteers (4 females and 4 males), transcutaneous electrical stimulation was applied to the right sural nerve to produce the nociceptive flexion reflex (RIII-reflex), moderate pain, and scalp somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs). Immersion of the left hand in cold water for 20min was used as HNCS. In a separate session, basal μ-opioid receptor availability was measured using positron emission tomography with the radiotracer [(11)C]carfentanil. HNCS produced a reduction of the P260 amplitude (p<0.05), a late component of SEP that reflects activity in the anterior cingulate cortex. This reduction was associated with higher basal μ-opioid receptor availability in the amygdala on the right (R(2)=0.55, p=0.03) with a similar trend on the left (R(2)=0.24, p=0.22). Besides, HNCS did not induce significant changes in pain and RIII-reflex amplitude (p>0.05). These results suggest that activation of μ-opioid receptors in the amygdala may contribute to the anti-nociceptive effects of HNCS. The lack of RIII-reflex modulation further suggests that μ-opioid receptor activation in the amygdala contributes to decrease pain-related brain activity through a cerebral mechanism independent of descending modulation.

  9. Synthetic studies of neoclerodane diterpenoids from Salvia splendens and evaluation of Opioid Receptor affinity.

    PubMed

    Fontana, Gianfranco; Savona, Giuseppe; Rodríguez, Benjamín; Dersch, Christina M; Rothman, Richard B; Prisinzano, Thomas E

    2008-12-20

    Salvinorin A (1), a neoclerodane diterpene from the hallucinogenic mint Salvia divinorum, is the only known non-nitrogenous and specific kappa-opioid agonist. Several structural congeners of 1 isolated from Salvia splendens (2 - 8) together with a series of semisynthetic derivatives (9 - 24), some of which possess a pyrazoline structural moiety (9, 19 - 22), have been tested for affinity at human mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors. None of these compounds showed high affinity binding to these receptors. However, 10 showed modest affinity for kappa receptors suggesting other naturally neoclerodanes from different Salvia species may possess opioid affinity.

  10. Mu opioid receptor polymorphism, early social adversity, and social traits.

    PubMed

    Carver, Charles S; Johnson, Sheri L; Kim, Youngmee

    2016-10-01

    A polymorphism in the mu opioid receptor gene OPRM1 (rs1799971) has been investigated for its role in sensitivity to social contexts. Evidence suggests that the G allele of this polymorphism is associated with higher levels of sensitivity. This study tested for main effects of the polymorphism and its interaction with a self-report measure of childhood adversity as an index of negative environment. Outcomes were several personality measures relevant to social connection. Significant interactions were obtained, such that the negative impact of childhood adversity on personality was greater among G carriers than among A homozygotes on measures of agreeableness, interdependence, anger proneness, hostility, authentic pride, life engagement, and an index of (mostly negative) feelings coloring one's world view. Findings support the role of OPRM1 in sensitivity to negative environments. Limitations are noted, including the lack of a measure of advantageous social environment to assess sensitivity to positive social contexts.

  11. μ-Opioid receptors in the stimulation of mesolimbic dopamine activity by ethanol and morphine in Long-Evans rats: a delayed effect of ethanol

    PubMed Central

    Valenta, John P.; Job, Martin O.; Mangieri, Regina A.; Schier, Christina J.; Howard, Elaina C.; Gonzales, Rueben A.

    2013-01-01

    Rationale Naltrexone, a non-selective opioid antagonist, decreases the euphoria and positive subjective responses to alcohol in heavy drinkers. It has been proposed that the μ-opioid receptor plays a role in ethanol reinforcement through modulation of ethanol-stimulated mesolimbic dopamine release. Objective To investigate the ability of naltrexone and β-funaltrexamine, an irreversible μ-opioid specific antagonist, to inhibit ethanol-stimulated and morphine-stimulated mesolimbic dopamine release and to determine whether opioid receptors on mesolimbic neurons contribute to these mechanisms. Methods Ethanol-naïve male Long Evans rats were given opioid receptor antagonists either intravenously, subcutaneously, or intracranially into the ventral tegmental area (VTA), followed by intravenous administration of ethanol or morphine. We measured extracellular dopamine in vivo using microdialysis probes inserted into the nucleus accumbens shell (n=114). Results Administration of naltrexone (intravenously) and β-funaltrexamine (subcutaneously), as well as intracranial injection of naltrexone into the VTA did not prevent the initiation of dopamine release by intravenous ethanol administration, but prevented it from being as prolonged. In contrast, morphine-stimulated mesolimbic dopamine release was effectively suppressed. Conclusions Our results provide novel evidence that there are two distinct mechanisms that mediate ethanol-stimulated mesolimbic dopamine release (an initial phase and a delayed phase), and that opioid receptor activation is required to maintain the delayed-phase dopamine release. Moreover, μ-opioid receptors account for this delayed-phase dopamine response, and the VTA is potentially the site of action of this mechanism. We conclude that μ-opioid receptors play different roles in the mechanisms of stimulation of mesolimbic dopamine activity by ethanol and morphine. PMID:23503684

  12. 15 years of genetic approaches in vivo for addiction research: Opioid receptor and peptide gene knockout in mouse models of drug abuse.

    PubMed

    Charbogne, Pauline; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Befort, Katia

    2014-01-01

    The endogenous opioid system is expressed throughout the brain reinforcement circuitry, and plays a major role in reward processing, mood control and the development of addiction. This neuromodulator system is composed of three receptors, mu, delta and kappa, interacting with a family of opioid peptides derived from POMC (β-endorphin), preproenkephalin (pEnk) and preprodynorphin (pDyn) precursors. Knockout mice targeting each gene of the opioid system have been created almost two decades ago. Extending classical pharmacology, these mutant mice represent unique tools to tease apart the specific role of each opioid receptor and peptide in vivo, and a powerful approach to understand how the opioid system modulates behavioral effects of drugs of abuse. The present review summarizes these studies, with a focus on major drugs of abuse including morphine/heroin, cannabinoids, psychostimulants, nicotine or alcohol. Genetic data, altogether, set the mu receptor as the primary target for morphine and heroin. In addition, this receptor is essential to mediate rewarding properties of non-opioid drugs of abuse, with a demonstrated implication of β-endorphin for cocaine and nicotine. Delta receptor activity reduces levels of anxiety and depressive-like behaviors, and facilitates morphine-context association. pEnk is involved in these processes and delta/pEnk signaling likely regulates alcohol intake. The kappa receptor mainly interacts with pDyn peptides to limit drug reward, and mediate dysphoric effects of cannabinoids and nicotine. Kappa/dynorphin activity also increases sensitivity to cocaine reward under stressful conditions. The opioid system remains a prime candidate to develop successful therapies in addicted individuals, and understanding opioid-mediated processes at systems level, through emerging genetic and imaging technologies, represents the next challenging goal and a promising avenue in addiction research. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'NIDA

  13. 15 years of genetic approaches in vivo for addiction research: opioid receptor and peptide gene knockout in mouse models of drug abuse

    PubMed Central

    Charbogne, Pauline; Kieffer, Brigitte L.; Befort, Katia

    2013-01-01

    The endogenous opioid system is expressed throughout the brain reinforcement circuitry, and plays a major role in reward processing, mood control and the development of addiction. This neuromodulator system is composed of three receptors, mu, delta and kappa, interacting with a family of opioid peptides derived from POMC (β-endorphin), preproenkephalin (pEnk) and preprodynorphin (pDyn) precursors. Knockout mice targeting each gene of the opioid system have been created almost two decades ago. Extending classical pharmacology, these mutant mice represent unique tools to tease apart the specific role of each opioid receptor and peptide in vivo, and a powerful approach to understand how the opioid system modulates behavioral effects of drugs of abuse. The present review summarizes these studies, with a focus on major drugs of abuse including morphine/heroin, cannabinoids, psychostimulants, nicotine or alcohol. Genetic data, altogether, set the mu receptor as the primary target for morphine and heroin. In addition, this receptor is essential to mediate rewarding properties of non-opioid drugs of abuse, with a demonstrated implication of β-endorphin for cocaine and nicotine. Delta receptor activity reduces levels of anxiety and depressive-like behaviors, and facilitates morphine-context association. PEnk is involved in these processes and delta/pEnk signaling likely regulates alcohol intake. The kappa receptor mainly interacts with pDyn peptides to limit drug reward, and mediate dysphoric effects of cannabinoids and nicotine. Kappa/dynorphin activity also increases sensitivity to cocaine reward under stressful conditions. The opioid system remains a prime candidate to develop successful therapies in addicted individuals, and understanding opioid-mediated processes at systems level, through emerging genetic and imaging technologies, represents the next challenging goal and a promising avenue in addiction research. PMID:24035914

  14. Peripheral delta opioid receptors require priming for functional competence in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Rowan, Matthew P.; Ruparel, Nikita B.; Patwardhan, Amol M.; Berg, Kelly A.; Clarke, William P.; Hargreaves, Kenneth M.

    2009-01-01

    Although centrally acting opioid analgesics produce profound antinociception under basal conditions, the antinociceptive properties of peripherally restricted opioid analgesics are generally only detectable after inflammation or injection of inflammatory mediators. Despite considerable research, the cellular mechanisms regulating the functional competence of peripheral opioid receptor systems for inhibition of nociception remain unclear. Recent work has demonstrated that brief pre-treatment (priming) with bradykinin, arachidonic acid, protease-activated receptor-2 agonists, or direct activators of protein kinase C (PKC) are capable of inducing the functional competence of the opioid receptor system in cultures of primary sensory neurons in vitro. Here we report that the peripheral delta opioid receptor system also requires PKC-dependent priming to inhibit prostaglandin E2 (PGE2)-induced thermal allodynia in the rat. Peripheral hindpaw injection of [D-Pen2,5]-enkephalin (DPDPE), a selective delta opioid receptor agonist, did not alter PGE2-induced thermal allodynia. However, following priming (15 min) with bradykinin or arachidonic acid, DPDPE produced a significant reduction in allodynia that was antagonist reversible, peripherally restricted, and exhibited a typical dose-response relationship. Furthermore, the bradykinin priming effect was blocked by the PKC inhibitors, bisindolylmaleimide I and chelerythrine. Collectively, these data support prior in vitro findings that, although present on primary sensory neurons, peripheral opioid receptor systems are functionally inactive under basal conditions and require activation of a PKC- and arachidonic acid-dependent signaling pathway to develop functional competence in vivo. PMID:19063879

  15. Direct association of Mu-opioid and NMDA glutamate receptors supports their cross-regulation: molecular implications for opioid tolerance.

    PubMed

    Garzón, Javier; Rodríguez-Muñoz, María; Sánchez-Blázquez, Pilar

    2012-09-01

    In the nervous system, the interaction of opioids like morphine and its derivatives, with the G protein-coupled Mu-opioid receptor (MOR) provokes the development of analgesic tolerance, as well as physical dependence. Tolerance implies that increasing doses of the drug are required to achieve the same effect, a phenomenon that contributes significantly to the social problems surrounding recreational opioid abuse. In recent years, our understanding of the mechanisms that control MOR function in the nervous system, and that eventually produce opioid tolerance, has increased greatly. Pharmacological studies have identified a number of signaling proteins involved in morphine-induced tolerance, including the N-methyl-D-aspartate acid glutamate receptor (NMDAR), nitric oxide synthase (NOS), protein kinase C (PKC), protein kinase A (PKA), calcium (Ca²⁺)/calmodulin (CaM)-dependent kinase II (CaMKII), delta-opioid receptor (DOR) and the regulators of G-protein signaling (RGS) proteins. There is general agreement on the critical role of the NMDAR/nNOS/CaMKII pathway in this process, which is supported by the recent demonstration of a physical association between MORs and NMDARs in post-synaptic structures. Indeed, it is feasible that treatments that diminish morphine tolerance may target distinct elements within the same regulatory MOR-NMDAR pathway. Accordingly, we propose a model that incorporates the most relevant signaling components implicated in opioid tolerance in which, certain signals originating from the activated MOR are perceived by the associated NMDAR, which in turn exerts a negative feedback effect on MOR signaling. MOR- and NMDAR-mediated signals work together in a sequential and interconnected manner to ultimately induce MOR desensitization. Future studies of these phenomena should focus on adding further components to this signaling pathway in order to better define the mechanism underlying MOR desensitization in neural cells.

  16. Neuropathic Pain Activates the Endogenous κ Opioid System in Mouse Spinal Cord and Induces Opioid Receptor Tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Mei; Petraschka, Michael; McLaughlin, Jay P.; Westenbroek, Ruth E.; Caron, Marc G.; Lefkowitz, Robert J.; Czyzyk, Traci A.; Pintar, John E.; Terman, Gregory W.; Chavkin, Charles

    2008-01-01

    Release of endogenous dynorphin opioids within the spinal cord after partial sciatic nerve ligation (pSNL) is known to contribute to the neuropathic pain processes. Using a phosphoselective antibody [κ opioid receptor (KOR-P)] able to detect the serine 369 phosphorylated form of the KOR, we determined possible sites of dynorphin action within the spinal cord after pSNL. KOR-P immunoreactivity (IR) was markedly increased in the L4 –L5 spinal dorsal horn of wild-type C57BL/6 mice (7–21 d) after lesion, but not in mice pretreated with the KOR antagonist nor-binaltorphimine (norBNI). In addition, knock-out mice lacking prodynorphin, KOR, or G-protein receptor kinase 3 (GRK3) did not show significant increases in KOR-P IR after pSNL. KOR-P IR was colocalized in both GABAergic neurons and GFAP-positive astrocytes in both ipsilateral and contralateral spinal dorsal horn. Consistent with sustained opioid release, KOR knock-out mice developed significantly increased tactile allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia in both the early (first week) and late (third week) interval after lesion. Similarly, mice pretreated with norBNI showed enhanced hyperalgesia and allodynia during the 3 weeks after pSNL. Because sustained activation of opioid receptors might induce tolerance, we measured the antinociceptive effect of the κ agonist U50,488 using radiant heat applied to the ipsilateral hindpaw, and we found that agonist potency was significantly decreased 7 d after pSNL. In contrast, neither prodynorphin nor GRK3 knock-out mice showed U50,488 tolerance after pSNL. These findings suggest that pSNL induced a sustained release of endogenous prodynorphin-derived opioid peptides that activated an anti-nociceptive KOR system in mouse spinal cord. Thus, endogenous dynorphin had both pronociceptive and antinociceptive actions after nerve injury and induced GRK3-mediated opioid tolerance. PMID:15140929

  17. Contributions of peripheral and central opioid receptors to antinociception in rat muscle pain models.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Eva Ma; Bagües, Ana; Martín, Ma Isabel

    2010-10-01

    Administration of hypertonic saline (HS) is an accepted model to study muscular pain. HS-induced nociceptive responses were tested in masseter, already described, and in two new pain models of spinally innervated muscles (gastrocnemius and triceps) developed in rats at our laboratory. HS administration in the masseter induced vigorous hindpaw shaking and in the gastrocnemius or triceps, paw withdrawal or flexing. Participation of the central and peripheral opioid receptors in HS-induced pain is compared in these muscles: masseter, innervated by trigeminal nerve, and gastrocnemius and triceps by spinal nerves. Morphine and loperamide were used to reveal peripheral and central components of opioid analgesia. Both agonists reduced HS-induced nociceptive behaviours in the masseter and were antagonised by the opioid antagonist naloxone and by naloxone methiodide, an opioid receptor antagonist that poorly penetrates the blood-brain barrier. Unexpectedly, in the gastrocnemius and triceps, morphine, but not loperamide, decreased the nociceptive behaviour and this effect was only reversed by naloxone. So, peripheral opioid receptors seem to participate in HS-induced masseter pain, whereas only central opioid receptors reduced the nociception in gastrocnemius and triceps. Our results suggest that the use of peripheral opioids can be more advantageous than central opioids for treatment of orofacial muscular pain.

  18. A new splice of life for the μ-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Iadarola, Michael J; Sapio, Matthew R; Mannes, Andrew J

    2015-07-01

    μ-Opioid agonists mediate their analgesic effect through GPCRs that are generated via alternate splicing of the Oprm1 transcript. While the majority of μ-opioids interact with receptors comprising the canonical 7 transmembrane (7TM) domain, a recently identified class of μ-opioids appears to require a 6TM domain variant. In this issue of the JCI, Lu and colleagues provide an in vivo proof-of-concept demonstration that a 6TM isoform of the μ-opioid receptor can support functional analgesia in Oprm1-deficent animals. The 6TM isoform was pharmacologically distinct from the canonical 7TM μ-opioid receptor, and 6TM agonists had a reduced side effect profile, which confers a strong therapeutic advantage over standard opioid analgesics. The observations of Lu et al. extend the reach of opioid-receptor neurobiology and pharmacology into a new era of analgesic discovery. This advance emerges from a series of fundamental research analyses in which elements of the endogenous opioid system were frequently in the vanguard.

  19. Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulators

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) are now being used as a treatment for breast cancer, osteoporosis and postmenopausal symptoms, as these drugs have features that can act as an estrogen agonist and an antagonist, depending on the target tissue. After tamoxifen, raloxifene, lasofoxifene and bazedoxifene SERMs have been developed and used for treatment. The clinically decisive difference among these drugs (i.e., the key difference) is their endometrial safety. Compared to bisphosphonate drug formulations for osteoporosis, SERMs are to be used primarily in postmenopausal women of younger age and are particularly recommended if there is a family history of invasive breast cancer, as their use greatly reduces the incidence of this type of cancer in women. Among the above mentioned SERMs, raloxifene has been widely used in prevention and treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis and vertebral compression fractures, and clinical studies are now underway to test the comparative advantages of raloxifene with those of bazedoxifene, a more recently developed SERM. Research on a number of adverse side effects of SERM agents is being performed to determine the long-term safety of this class of compouds for treatment of osteoporosis. PMID:27559463

  20. Opioid system and human emotions.

    PubMed

    Nummenmaa, Lauri; Tuominen, Lauri

    2017-04-10

    Emotions are states of vigilant readiness that guide human and animal behaviour during survival-salient situations. Categorical models of emotions posit neurally and physiologically distinct human basic emotions (anger, fear, disgust, happiness, sadness, and surprise) that govern different survival functions. Opioid receptors are expressed abundantly in the mammalian emotion circuit and the opioid system modulates a multitude of functions related to arousal and motivation. Yet, its specific contribution to different basic emotions has remained poorly understood. Here we review how the endogenous opioid system and particularly the μ receptor contributes to emotional processing in humans. Endogenous opioid system activation is consistently associated with both pleasant and unpleasant emotions. In general, exogenous opioid agonists promote approach-oriented emotions (anger, pleasure) and inhibit avoidance-oriented emotions (fear, sadness). Opioids also modulate social bonding and affiliative behaviour, and prolonged opioid abuse may render both social bonding and emotion recognition circuits dysfunctional. For surprise and disgust, no clear evidence of opioidergic modulation was found. Taken together, the opioid systems contribute to a wide array of positive and negative emotions via their general role in modulating the approach versus avoidance motivation associated with specific emotions. Because of the protective effects of opioid-system-mediated prosociality and positive mood, the opioid system may constitute an important factor contributing to psychological and psychosomatic resiliency.

  1. Mycobacteria Attenuate Nociceptive Responses by Formyl Peptide Receptor Triggered Opioid Peptide Release from Neutrophils

    PubMed Central

    Voigt, Philipp; Mousa, Shaaban; Stolz, Andrea; Labuz, Dominika; Schäfer, Michael; Schaefer, Michael; Stein, Christoph; Brack, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    In inflammation, pain is regulated by a balance of pro- and analgesic mediators. Analgesic mediators include opioid peptides which are secreted by neutrophils at the site of inflammation, leading to activation of opioid receptors on peripheral sensory neurons. In humans, local opioids and opioid peptides significantly downregulate postoperative as well as arthritic pain. In rats, inflammatory pain is induced by intraplantar injection of heat inactivated Mycobacterium butyricum, a component of complete Freund's adjuvant. We hypothesized that mycobacterially derived formyl peptide receptor (FPR) and/or toll like receptor (TLR) agonists could activate neutrophils, leading to opioid peptide release and inhibition of inflammatory pain. In complete Freund's adjuvant-induced inflammation, thermal and mechanical nociceptive thresholds of the paw were quantified (Hargreaves and Randall-Selitto methods, respectively). Withdrawal time to heat was decreased following systemic neutrophil depletion as well as local injection of opioid receptor antagonists or anti-opioid peptide (i.e. Met-enkephalin, β-endorphin) antibodies indicating an increase in pain. In vitro, opioid peptide release from human and rat neutrophils was measured by radioimmunoassay. Met-enkephalin release was triggered by Mycobacterium butyricum and formyl peptides but not by TLR-2 or TLR-4 agonists. Mycobacterium butyricum induced a rise in intracellular calcium as determined by FURA loading and calcium imaging. Opioid peptide release was blocked by intracellular calcium chelation as well as phosphoinositol-3-kinase inhibition. The FPR antagonists Boc-FLFLF and cyclosporine H reduced opioid peptide release in vitro and increased inflammatory pain in vivo while TLR 2/4 did not appear to be involved. In summary, mycobacteria activate FPR on neutrophils, resulting in tonic secretion of opioid peptides from neutrophils and in a decrease in inflammatory pain. Future therapeutic strategies may aim at selective FPR

  2. β‐Arrestin 2 dependence of δ opioid receptor agonists is correlated with alcohol intake

    PubMed Central

    Chiang, T; Sansuk, K

    2016-01-01

    Background and Purpose δ Opioid receptor agonists are being developed as potential treatments for depression and alcohol use disorders. This is particularly interesting as depression is frequently co‐morbid with alcohol use disorders. Yet we have previously shown that δ receptor agonists range widely in their ability to modulate alcohol intake; certain δ receptor agonists actually increase alcohol consumption in mice. We propose that variations in β‐arrestin 2 recruitment contribute to the differential behavioural profile of δ receptor agonists. Experimental Approach We used three diarylmethylpiperazine‐based non‐peptidic δ receptor selective agonists (SNC80, SNC162 and ARM390) and three structurally diverse δ receptor agonists (TAN‐67, KNT127 and NIH11082). We tested these agonists in cAMP and β‐arrestin 2 recruitment assays and a behavioural assay of alcohol intake in male C57BL/6 mice. We used β‐arrestin 2 knockout mice and a model of depression‐like behaviour to further study the role of β‐arrestin 2 in δ receptor pharmacology. Key Results All six tested δ receptor agonists were full agonists in the cAMP assay but displayed distinct β‐arrestin 2 recruitment efficacy. The efficacy of δ receptor agonists to recruit β‐arrestin 2 positively correlated with their ability to increase alcohol intake (P < 0.01). The effects of the very efficacious recruiter SNC80 on alcohol intake, alcohol place preference and depression‐like behaviour were β‐arrestin 2‐dependent. Conclusions and Implications Our finding that δ receptor agonists that strongly recruit β‐arrestin 2 can increase alcohol intake carries important ramifications for drug development of δ receptor agonists for treatment of alcohol use disorders and depressive disorders. © 2015 The British Pharmacological Society PMID:26507558

  3. β-Arrestin 2 dependence of δ opioid receptor agonists is correlated with alcohol intake.

    PubMed

    Chiang, T; Sansuk, K; van Rijn, R M

    2016-01-01

    δ Opioid receptor agonists are being developed as potential treatments for depression and alcohol use disorders. This is particularly interesting as depression is frequently co-morbid with alcohol use disorders. Yet we have previously shown that δ receptor agonists range widely in their ability to modulate alcohol intake; certain δ receptor agonists actually increase alcohol consumption in mice. We propose that variations in β-arrestin 2 recruitment contribute to the differential behavioural profile of δ receptor agonists. We used three diarylmethylpiperazine-based non-peptidic δ receptor selective agonists (SNC80, SNC162 and ARM390) and three structurally diverse δ receptor agonists (TAN-67, KNT127 and NIH11082). We tested these agonists in cAMP and β-arrestin 2 recruitment assays and a behavioural assay of alcohol intake in male C57BL/6 mice. We used β-arrestin 2 knockout mice and a model of depression-like behaviour to further study the role of β-arrestin 2 in δ receptor pharmacology. All six tested δ receptor agonists were full agonists in the cAMP assay but displayed distinct β-arrestin 2 recruitment efficacy. The efficacy of δ receptor agonists to recruit β-arrestin 2 positively correlated with their ability to increase alcohol intake (P < 0.01). The effects of the very efficacious recruiter SNC80 on alcohol intake, alcohol place preference and depression-like behaviour were β-arrestin 2-dependent. Our finding that δ receptor agonists that strongly recruit β-arrestin 2 can increase alcohol intake carries important ramifications for drug development of δ receptor agonists for treatment of alcohol use disorders and depressive disorders. © 2015 The British Pharmacological Society

  4. Regulation of ingestive behaviors in the rat by GSK1521498, a novel micro-opioid receptor-selective inverse agonist.

    PubMed

    Ignar, Diane M; Goetz, Aaron S; Noble, Kimberly Nichols; Carballo, Luz Helena; Stroup, Andrea E; Fisher, Julie C; Boucheron, Joyce A; Brainard, Tracy A; Larkin, Andrew L; Epperly, Andrea H; Shearer, Todd W; Sorensen, Scott D; Speake, Jason D; Hommel, Jonathan D

    2011-10-01

    μ-Opioid receptor (MOR) agonism induces palatable food consumption principally through modulation of the rewarding properties of food. N-{[3,5-difluoro-3'-(1H-1,2,4-triazol-3-yl)-4-biphenylyl]methyl}-2,3-dihydro-1H-inden-2-amine (GSK1521498) is a novel opioid receptor inverse agonist that, on the basis of in vitro affinity assays, is greater than 10- or 50-fold selective for human or rat MOR, respectively, compared with κ-opioid receptors (KOR) and δ-opioid receptors (DOR). Likewise, preferential MOR occupancy versus KOR and DOR was observed by autoradiography in brain slices from Long Evans rats dosed orally with the drug. GSK1521498 suppressed nocturnal food consumption of standard or palatable chow in lean and diet-induced obese (DIO) Long Evans rats. Both the dose-response relationship and time course of efficacy in lean rats fed palatable chow correlated with μ receptor occupancy and the plasma concentration profile of the drug. Chronic oral administration of GSK1521498 induced body weight loss in DIO rats, which comprised fat mass reduction. The reduction in body weight was equivalent to the cumulative reduction in food consumption; thus, the effect of GSK1521498 on body weight is related to inhibition of food consumption. GSK1521498 suppressed the preference for sucrose-containing solutions in lean rats. In operant response models also using lean rats, GSK1521498 reduced the reinforcement efficacy of palatable food reward and enhanced satiety. In conclusion, GSK1521498 is a potent, MOR-selective inverse agonist that modulates the hedonic aspects of ingestion and, therefore, could represent a pharmacological treatment for obesity and binge-eating disorders.

  5. Structural insights into μ-opioid receptor activation

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Weijiao; Manglik, Aashish; Venkatakrishnan, A. J.; Laeremans, Toon; Feinberg, Evan N.; Sanborn, Adrian L.; Kato, Hideaki E.; Livingston, Kathryn E.; Thorsen, Thor S.; Kling, Ralf; Granier, Sébastien; Gmeiner, Peter; Husbands, Stephen M.; Traynor, John R.; Weis, William I.; Steyaert, Jan; Dror, Ron O.; Kobilka, Brian K.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Activation of the μ-opioid receptor (μOR) is responsible for the efficacy of the most effective analgesics. To understand the structural basis for μOR activation, we obtained a 2.1 Å X-ray crystal structure of the μOR bound to the morphinan agonist BU72 and stabilized by a G protein-mimetic camelid-antibody fragment. The BU72-stabilized changes in the μOR binding pocket are subtle and differ from those observed for agonist-bound structures of the β2 adrenergic receptor (β2AR) and the M2 muscarinic receptor (M2R). Comparison with active β2AR reveals a common rearrangement in the packing of three conserved amino acids in the core of the μOR, and molecular dynamics simulations illustrate how the ligand-binding pocket is conformationally linked to this conserved triad. Additionally, an extensive polar network between the ligand-binding pocket and the cytoplasmic domains appears to play a similar role in signal propagation for all three GPCRs. PMID:26245379

  6. An Opioid Agonist that Does Not Induce μ-Opioid Receptor—Arrestin Interactions or Receptor Internalization

    PubMed Central

    Groer, C. E.; Tidgewell, K.; Moyer, R. A.; Harding, W. W.; Rothman, R. B.; Prisinzano, T. E.; Bohn, L. M.

    2013-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptor desensitization and trafficking are important regulators of opioid receptor signaling that can dictate overall drug responsiveness in vivo. Furthermore, different μ-opioid receptor (μOR) ligands can lead to varying degrees of receptor regulation, presumably because of distinct structural conformations conferred by agonist binding. For example, morphine binding produces a μOR with low affinity for β-arrestin proteins and limited receptor internalization, whereas enkephalin analogs promote robust trafficking of both β-arrestins and the receptors. Here, we evaluate μOR trafficking in response to activation by a novel μ-selective agonist derived from the naturally occurring plant product, salvinorin A. It is interesting that this compound, termed herkinorin, does not promote the recruitment of β-arrestin-2 to the μOR and does not lead to receptor internalization. Moreover, whereas G protein-coupled receptor kinase overexpression can promote morphine-induced β-arrestin interactions and μOR internalization, such manipulations do not promote herkinorin-induced trafficking. Studies in mice have shown that β-arrestin-2 plays an important role in the development of morphine-induced tolerance, constipation, and respiratory depression. Therefore, drugs that can activate the receptor without recruiting the arrestins may be a promising step in the development of opiate analgesics that distinguish between agonist activity and receptor regulation and may ultimately lead to therapeutics designed to provide pain relief without the adverse side effects normally associated with the opiate narcotics. PMID:17090705

  7. Morphine mediates a proinflammatory phenotype via μ-opioid receptor-PKCɛ-Akt-ERK1/2 signaling pathway in activated microglial cells.

    PubMed

    Merighi, Stefania; Gessi, Stefania; Varani, Katia; Fazzi, Debora; Stefanelli, Angela; Borea, Pier Andrea

    2013-08-15

    Anti-nociceptive tolerance to opioids severely limits their clinical efficacy for the treatment of chronic pain syndromes. Glia has a central role in the development of morphine tolerance. Here, we characterized the receptor-proximal signaling events that link μ-opioid receptors to activation of Akt and ERKs in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated murine microglial cells with the aim to define the molecular mechanism contributing to the ability of morphine to increase inflammatory mediators such as nitric oxide (NO), tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-6 in activated microglial cells. In particular, the role of PKCɛ isoform in μ-opioid-induced inflammatory response in microglia was investigated. The results indicate that morphine increases the LPS-induced expression and activation of PKCɛ and stimulates Akt pathway upstream of ERK1/2 and iNOS. Furthermore, we found that morphine enhanced the release of IL-1β, TNF-α, IL-6, and of NO via μ-opioid receptor-PKCɛ signaling pathway in activated microglial cells, mediating a proinflammatory phenotype in mouse microglial cells. Together, these data suggest that the modulation of μ-opioid receptor signaling on microglia through PKCɛ selective inhibition may provide a means to attenuate glial activation and, as a consequence, to treat opioid development of tolerance and dependence.

  8. Mu-opioid receptor (MOR) expression in the human spiral ganglia

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Kimanh D.; Mowlds, Donald; Lopez, Ivan A.; Hosokawa, Seiji; Ishiyama, Akira; Ishiyama, Gail

    2015-01-01

    Opioid peptides and their receptors have been localized to the inner ear of the rat and guinea pig mammalian models. The expression of mu opioid receptor (MOR) in the human and mouse cochlea is not yet known. We present MOR protein localization by immunohistochemistry and mRNA expression by in situ hybridization in the human and mouse spiral ganglia (SG) and organ of Corti. In the human most of the (SG) neurons were immunoreactive; a subset was non-immunoreactive. In situ hybridization revealed a similar labeling pattern across the neurons of the SG. A similar distribution MOR pattern was demonstrated in the mouse SG. In the mouse organ of Corti MOR was expressed in inner and outer hair cells. Fibers underneath the inner hair cells were also MOR immunoreactive. These results are consistent with a role of MOR in neuro-modulation of the auditory periphery. The present results show that the expression of MORs is well-conserved across multiple mammalian species, indicative of an important role in auditory processing. PMID:25278190

  9. Indications for Opioid Antagonists.

    PubMed

    Coppes, O J Michael; Sang, Christine N

    2017-06-01

    As opioids have become more common in clinical practice for the treatment of both acute and chronic pain, so too has the need for a deeper understanding of the clinical applications of opioid antagonists. The purpose of this review is to present both the longstanding and potential new indications for the use of drugs that block the effects of opioid receptors. There is a growing body of data demonstrating the modulation of pain by opioid antagonists. Additional clinical studies that show their direct antinociceptive effects and/or enhancement of the analgesic potency of opioid agonists are warranted. We briefly discuss the well-established role that these agents play in the reversal of life-threatening opioid toxicity and explore both existing and expanding clinical applications, including their apparent paradox that they may themselves be associated with analgesia.

  10. Genomic variations and transcriptional regulation of the human mu-opioid receptor gene.

    PubMed

    Bayerer, Bettina; Stamer, Ulrike; Hoeft, Andreas; Stüber, Frank

    2007-05-01

    The mu-opioid receptor (MOR1) is a target of endogenous and exogenous opioids and plays a pivotal role for anesthesia and analgesia. Variations in the 5' flanking sequence of the mu-opioid receptor gene may influence transcriptional regulation and ultimately alter protein expression of MOR1. In the present study we investigated the influence of eight single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) within the mu-opioid receptor promoter on promoter activity and evaluated the frequencies of the relevant SNPs in 700 patients under opioid medication. Reporter-gene-constructs were created by means of PCR and site directed mutagenesis, testing eight SNPs previously described. The neuroblastoma cell line SHSY5Y was used for transfection and promoter activity was estimated by luciferase activity. Of the eight reporter gene constructs employed to test genomic variations, two produced a significant change in luciferase activity when compared to wild-type constructs. The G-554A variation located within a known NFkB binding element resulted in a decreased activity whereas the A/G base exchange at position -1320 showed an increased luciferase activity. This particular variant generated a myeloid zinc finger (MZF1) cis-acting element known to impact transcription. The allele frequency of the -1320G variant was 0.21% in 700 Caucasian patients under opioid medication in contrast to 9.1% reported previously in drug addicted African Americans. Because of this unexpected low frequency an association analysis to opioid requirements and effects of mu-opioid receptor agonists was not feasible. In conclusion, transcriptional regulation of MOR1 is modified by two genetic variations at positions -554 and -1320 of the mu-opioid receptor promoter. Individuals presenting these variations may have an altered level of MOR expression. A possible association of these genomic variants on efficacy and side effects of opioid treatment in different ethnic groups has to be elucidated.

  11. The endogenous opioid system in cocaine addiction: what lessons have opioid peptide and receptor knockout mice taught us?

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Ji Hoon; Kitchen, Ian; Bailey, Alexis

    2012-01-01

    Cocaine addiction has become a major concern in the UK as Britain tops the European ‘league table’ for cocaine abuse. Despite its devastating health and socio-economic consequences, no effective pharmacotherapy for treating cocaine addiction is available. Identifying neurochemical changes induced by repeated drug exposure is critical not only for understanding the transition from recreational drug use towards compulsive drug abuse but also for the development of novel targets for the treatment of the disease and especially for relapse prevention. This article focuses on the effects of chronic cocaine exposure and withdrawal on each of the endogenous opioid peptides and receptors in rodent models. In addition, we review the studies that utilized opioid peptide or receptor knockout mice in order to identify and/or clarify the role of different components of the opioid system in cocaine-addictive behaviours and in cocaine-induced alterations of brain neurochemistry. The review of these studies indicates a region-specific activation of the µ-opioid receptor system following chronic cocaine exposure, which may contribute towards the rewarding effect of the drug and possibly towards cocaine craving during withdrawal followed by relapse. Cocaine also causes a region-specific activation of the κ-opioid receptor/dynorphin system, which may antagonize the rewarding effect of the drug, and at the same time, contribute to the stress-inducing properties of the drug and the triggering of relapse. These conclusions have important implications for the development of effective pharmacotherapy for the treatment of cocaine addiction and the prevention of relapse. PMID:22428846

  12. Characterization of methadone as a β-arrestin-biased μ-opioid receptor agonist

    PubMed Central

    Doi, Seira; Mori, Tomohisa; Uzawa, Naoki; Arima, Takamichi; Takahashi, Tomoyuki; Uchida, Masashi; Yawata, Ayaka; Narita, Michiko; Uezono, Yasuhito; Suzuki, Tsutomu

    2016-01-01

    Background Methadone is a unique µ-opioid receptor agonist. Although several researchers have insisted that the pharmacological effects of methadone are mediated through the blockade of NMDA receptor, the underlying mechanism by which methadone exerts its distinct pharmacological effects compared to those of other µ-opioid receptor agonists is still controversial. In the present study, we further investigated the pharmacological profile of methadone compared to those of fentanyl and morphine as measured mainly by the discriminative stimulus effect and in vitro assays for NMDA receptor binding, µ-opioid receptor-internalization, and µ-opioid receptor-mediated β-arrestin recruitment. Results We found that fentanyl substituted for the discriminative stimulus effects of methadone, whereas a relatively high dose of morphine was required to substitute for the discriminative stimulus effects of methadone in rats. Under these conditions, the non-competitive NMDA receptor antagonist MK-801 did not substitute for the discriminative stimulus effects of methadone. In association with its discriminative stimulus effect, methadone failed to displace the receptor binding of MK801 using mouse brain membrane. Methadone and fentanyl, but not morphine, induced potent µ-opioid receptor internalization accompanied by the strong recruitment of β-arrestin-2 in µ-opioid receptor-overexpressing cells. Conclusions These results suggest that methadone may, at least partly, produce its pharmacological effect as a β-arrestin-biased µ-opioid receptor agonist, similar to fentanyl, and NMDA receptor blockade is not the main contributor to the pharmacological profile of methadone. PMID:27317580

  13. Design and functional evaluation of an optically active μ-opioid receptor.

    PubMed

    Barish, Philip A; Xu, Ying; Li, Jianxin; Sun, Jiao; Jarajapu, Yagna P R; Ogle, William O

    2013-04-05

    The use of opioids, which achieve therapeutic analgesia through activation of μ-opioid receptors, are limited in the management of chronic pain by adverse effects including tolerance and addiction. Optogenetics is an emerging approach of designing molecular targets that can produce cell-specific receptor-mediated analgesia with minimal side effects. Here we report the design and functional characterization of a chimeric μ-opioid receptor that could be photoactivated to trigger intracellular signaling. A prototype optoactive μ-opioid receptor (optoMOR) was designed by replacing the intracellular domains from rhodopsin with those of the native μ-opioid receptor and was transiently expressed in human embryonic kidney (HEK293) cells. Expression and distribution of the protein were confirmed by immunocytochemistry. The signal-transduction mechanisms induced by photoactivation of the optoMOR were evaluated and compared with the native μ-opioid receptor stimulation by an agonist, D-Ala(2), N-MePhe(4), Gly-ol-enkephalin (DAMGO). Cells were depolarized by extracellular potassium and the depolarization-induced calcium (Ca(2+)) influx was quantified by using Fura-2 imaging. The forskolin-stimulated adenylate cyclase/cAMP cascade was evaluated by ELISA or western blotting of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and the phosphorylation of cAMP response element binding protein (CREB). The optoMOR protein distribution was observed intracellularly and on the plasma membrane similar to the native μ-opioid receptor in HEK293 cells. Photoactivation of optoMOR decreased the Ca(2+) influx and inhibited the forskolin-induced cAMP generation, activation of CREB, and BDNF levels in optoMOR-expressing cells similar to the activation of native μ-opioid receptor by DAMGO. Thus the current study has accomplished the design of a prototype optoMOR and characterized the cellular signaling mechanisms activated by light stimulation of this receptor. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  14. Peripheral endothelin B receptor agonist-induced antinociception involves endogenous opioids in mice

    PubMed Central

    Quang, Phuong N.; Schmidt, Brian L.

    2010-01-01

    Endothelin-1 (ET-1) produced by various cancers is known to be responsible for inducing pain. While ET-1 binding to ETAR on peripheral nerves clearly mediates nociception, effects from binding to ETBR are less clear. The present study assessed the effects of ETBR activation and the role of endogenous opioid analgesia in carcinoma pain using an orthotopic cancer pain mouse model. mRNA expression analysis showed that ET-1 was nearly doubled while ETBR was significantly down-regulated in a human oral SCC cell line compared to normal oral keratinocytes (NOK). Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) cell culture treated with an ETBR agonist (10−4M, 10−5 M, and 10−6 M BQ-3020) significantly increased production of β-endorphin without any effects on leu-enkephalin or dynorphin. Cancer inoculated in the hind paw of athymic mice with SCC induced significant pain, as indicated by reduction of paw withdrawal thresholds in response to mechanical stimulation, compared to sham-injected and NOK-injected groups. Intratumor administration of 3 mg/kg BQ-3020 attenuated cancer pain by approximately 50% up to 3 hours post-injection compared to PBS-vehicle and contralateral injection, while intratumor ETBR antagonist BQ-788 treatment (100 and 300 μg/kg and 3 mg/kg) had no effects. Local naloxone methiodide (500 μg/kg) or selective μ-opioid receptor antagonist (CTOP, 500 μg/kg) injection reversed ETBR agonist-induced antinociception in cancer animals. We propose that these results demonstrate that peripheral ETBR agonism attenuates carcinoma pain by modulating β-endorphins released from the SCC to act on peripheral opioid receptors found in the cancer microenvironment. PMID:20206445

  15. Mu opioid receptor antagonism in the nucleus accumbens shell blocks consumption of a preferred sucrose solution in an anticipatory contrast paradigm.

    PubMed

    Katsuura, Y; Taha, S A

    2014-03-07

    Binge eating, a central feature of multiple eating disorders, is characterized by excessive consumption occurring during discrete, often brief, intervals. Highly palatable foods play an important role in these binge episodes - foods chosen during bingeing are typically higher in fat or sugar than those normally consumed. Multiple lines of evidence suggest a central role for signaling by endogenous opioids in promoting palatability-driven eating. This role extends to binge-like feeding studied in animal models, which is reduced by administration of opioid antagonists. However, the neural circuits and specific opioid receptors mediating these effects are not fully understood. In the present experiments, we tested the hypothesis that endogenous opioid signaling in the nucleus accumbens promotes consumption in a model of binge eating. We used an anticipatory contrast paradigm in which separate groups of rats were presented sequentially with 4% sucrose and then either 20% or 0% sucrose solutions. In rats presented with 4% and then 20% sucrose, daily training in this paradigm produced robust intake of 20% sucrose, preceded by learned hypophagia during access to 4% sucrose. We tested the effects of site-specific infusions of naltrexone (a nonspecific opioid receptor antagonist: 0, 1, 10, and 50μg/side in the nucleus accumbens core and shell), naltrindole (a delta opioid receptor antagonist: 0, 0.5, 5, and 10μg/side in the nucleus accumbens shell) and beta-funaltrexamine (a mu opioid receptor antagonist: 0 and 2.5μg/side in the nucleus accumbens shell) on consumption in this contrast paradigm. Our results show that signaling through the mu opioid receptor in the nucleus accumbens shell is dynamically modulated during formation of learned food preferences, and promotes binge-like consumption of palatable foods based on these learned preferences.

  16. Pharmacological characterization of LPS and opioid interactions at the toll-like receptor 4.

    PubMed

    Stevens, C W; Aravind, S; Das, S; Davis, R L

    2013-03-01

    Previous work in our laboratory showed opioid agents inhibit cytokine expression in astrocytes. Recently, Watkins and colleagues hypothesized that opioid agonists activate toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) signalling, which leads to neuroinflammation. To test this hypothesis, we characterized LPS and opioid effects on TLR4 signalling in reporter cells. NF-κB reporter cells expressing high levels of TLR4 were used to compare LPS and opioid effects on NF-κB activation, a pathway activated by TLR4 stimulation. LPS increased TLR4 signalling in a concentration-dependent manner and was antagonized by LPS antagonist (LPS-RS, from Rhodobacter sphaeroides). A concentration ratio analysis showed that LPS-RS was a competitive antagonist. The opioid agonists, morphine and fentanyl, produced minor activation of TLR4 signalling when given alone. When tested following LPS stimulation, opioid agonists inhibited NF-κB activation but this inhibition was not blocked by the general opioid antagonist, naloxone, nor by the selective μ opioid receptor antagonist, β-FNA. Indeed, both naloxone and β-FNA also inhibited NF-κB activation in reporter cells. Further examination of fentanyl and β-FNA effects revealed that both opioid agents inhibited LPS signalling in a non-competitive fashion. These results show that LPS-RS is a competitive antagonist at the TLR4 complex, and that both opioid agonists and antagonists inhibit LPS signalling in a non-competitive fashion through a non-GPCR, opioid site(s) in the TLR4 signalling pathway. If confirmed, existing opioid agents or other drug molecules more selective at this novel site may provide a new therapeutic approach to the treatment of neuroinflammation. © 2012 The Authors. British Journal of Pharmacology © 2012 The British Pharmacological Society.

  17. Allosteric Modulation of Chemoattractant Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Allegretti, Marcello; Cesta, Maria Candida; Locati, Massimo

    2016-01-01

    Chemoattractants control selective leukocyte homing via interactions with a dedicated family of related G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR). Emerging evidence indicates that the signaling activity of these receptors, as for other GPCR, is influenced by allosteric modulators, which interact with the receptor in a binding site distinct from the binding site of the agonist and modulate the receptor signaling activity in response to the orthosteric ligand. Allosteric modulators have a number of potential advantages over orthosteric agonists/antagonists as therapeutic agents and offer unprecedented opportunities to identify extremely selective drug leads. Here, we resume evidence of allosterism in the context of chemoattractant receptors, discussing in particular its functional impact on functional selectivity and probe/concentration dependence of orthosteric ligands activities. PMID:27199992

  18. Involvement of mu opioid receptors of periaqueductal gary (PAG) in acupuncture inhibition of noxious blood pressure response in rabbits.

    PubMed

    Gao, M; Xu, W; Chen, W; He, L

    1994-01-01

    Strong electric shock stimulation of the rabbit front paw elicited a pressor blood pressure response regarded as noxious response. Ligands of mu opioid receptors were microinjected into the PAG to observe their effects on acupunture inhibition of the pressor response. (1) Ohmefentanyl (OMF), a mu agonist, significantly attenuated the pressor response. Mu antagonist TCTAP greatly enhanced the pressor response. (2) Electroacupuncture (EA) significantly inhibited the pressor response, the inhibition being readily reversed by TCTAP. The response after TCTAP was significantly greater than that of the control before EA. The results suggest that noxious stimulation is able to activate the mu opioid receptor of the PAG to modulate the noxious response and EA is able to enhance the activation.

  19. Hormonal regulation of delta opioid receptor immunoreactivity in interneurons and pyramidal cells in the rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Williams, Tanya J; Torres-Reveron, Annelyn; Chapleau, Jeanette D; Milner, Teresa A

    2011-02-01

    Clinical and preclinical studies indicate that women and men differ in relapse vulnerability to drug-seeking behavior during abstinence periods. As relapse is frequently triggered by exposure of the recovered addict to objects previously associated with drug use and the formation of these associations requires memory systems engaged by the hippocampal formation (HF), studies exploring ovarian hormone modulation of hippocampal function are warranted. Previous studies revealed that ovarian steroids alter endogenous opioid peptide levels and trafficking of mu opioid receptors in the HF, suggesting cooperative interaction between opioids and estrogens in modulating hippocampal excitability. However, whether ovarian steroids affect the levels or trafficking of delta opioid receptors (DORs) in the HF is unknown. Here, hippocampal sections of adult male and normal cycling female Sprague-Dawley rats were processed for quantitative immunoperoxidase light microscopy and dual label fluorescence or immunoelectron microscopy using antisera directed against the DOR and neuropeptide Y (NPY). Consistent with previous studies in males, DOR-immunoreactivity (-ir) localized to select interneurons and principal cells in the female HF. In comparison to males, females, regardless of estrous cycle phase, show reduced DOR-ir in the granule cell layer of the dentate gyrus and proestrus (high estrogen) females, in particular, display reduced DOR-ir in the CA1 pyramidal cell layer. Ultrastructural analysis of DOR-labeled profiles in CA1 revealed that while females generally show fewer DORs in the distal apical dendrites of pyramidal cells, proestrus females, in particular, exhibit DOR internalization and trafficking towards the soma. Dual label studies revealed that DORs are found in NPY-labeled interneurons in the hilus, CA3, and CA1. While DOR colocalization frequency in NPY-labeled neuron somata was similar between animals in the hilus, proestrus females had fewer NPY-labeled neurons that

  20. Human native kappa opioid receptor functions not predicted by recombinant receptors: Implications for drug design

    PubMed Central

    Broad, John; Maurel, Damien; Kung, Victor W. S.; Hicks, Gareth A.; Schemann, Michael; Barnes, Michael R.; Kenakin, Terrence P.; Granier, Sébastien; Sanger, Gareth J.

    2016-01-01

    If activation of recombinant G protein-coupled receptors in host cells (by drugs or other ligands) has predictive value, similar data must be obtained with native receptors naturally expressed in tissues. Using mouse and human recombinant κ opioid receptors transfected into a host cell, two selectively-acting compounds (ICI204448, asimadoline) equi-effectively activated both receptors, assessed by measuring two different cell signalling pathways which were equally affected without evidence of bias. In mouse intestine, naturally expressing κ receptors within its nervous system, both compounds also equi-effectively activated the receptor, inhibiting nerve-mediated muscle contraction. However, whereas ICI204448 acted similarly in human intestine, where κ receptors are again expressed within its nervous system, asimadoline was inhibitory only at very high concentrations; instead, low concentrations of asimadoline reduced the activity of ICI204448. This demonstration of species-dependence in activation of native, not recombinant κ receptors may be explained by different mouse/human receptor structures affecting receptor expression and/or interactions with intracellular signalling pathways in native environments, to reveal differences in intrinsic efficacy between receptor agonists. These results have profound implications in drug design for κ and perhaps other receptors, in terms of recombinant-to-native receptor translation, species-dependency and possibly, a need to use human, therapeutically-relevant, not surrogate tissues. PMID:27492592

  1. In-vitro investigation of oxazol and urea analogues of morphinan at opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Peng, Xuemei; Knapp, Brian I; Bidlack, Jean M; Neumeyer, John L

    2007-06-15

    A series of 2-amino-oxazole (7 and 8) analogs and 2-one-oxazole analogs (9 and 10) were synthesized from cyclorphan (1) or butorphan (2) and evaluated in-vitro by their binding affinity at mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors and compared with their 2-aminothiozole analogs 5 and 6. Ligands 7-10 showed decreased affinities at kappa and mu receptors. Urea analogs (11-14) were also prepared from 2-aminocyclorphan (3) or 2-aminobutorphan (4) and evaluated in-vitro by their binding affinity at mu, delta, and kappa opioid receptors. The urea derived opioids retained their affinities at mu receptors while showing increased affinities at delta receptors and decreased affinities at kappa receptors. Functional activities of these compounds were measured in the [35S]GTPgammaS binding assay, illustrating that all of these ligands were kappa agonists. At the mu receptor, compounds 11 and 12 were mu agonist/antagonists.

  2. Differential Regulation of 6- and 7-Transmembrane Helix Variants of μ-Opioid Receptor in Response to Morphine Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Convertino, Marino; Samoshkin, Alexander; Viet, Chi T.; Gauthier, Josee; Li Fraine, Steven P.; Sharif-Naeini, Reza; Schmidt, Brian L.; Maixner, William; Diatchenko, Luda; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.

    2015-01-01

    The pharmacological effect of opioids originates, at the cellular level, by their interaction with the μ-opioid receptor (mOR) resulting in the regulation of voltage-gated Ca2+ channels and inwardly rectifying K+ channels that ultimately modulate the synaptic transmission. Recently, an alternative six trans-membrane helix isoform of mOR, (6TM-mOR) has been identified, but its function and signaling are still largely unknown. Here, we present the structural and functional mechanisms of 6TM-mOR signaling activity upon binding to morphine. Our data suggest that despite the similarity of binding modes of the alternative 6TM-mOR and the dominant seven trans-membrane helix variant (7TM-mOR), the interaction with morphine generates different dynamic responses in the two receptors, thus, promoting the activation of different mOR-specific signaling pathways. We characterize a series of 6TM-mOR-specific cellular responses, and observed that they are significantly different from those for 7TM-mOR. Morphine stimulation of 6TM-mOR does not promote a cellular cAMP response, while it increases the intracellular Ca2+ concentration and reduces the cellular K+ conductance. Our findings indicate that 6TM-mOR has a unique contribution to the cellular opioid responses. Therefore, it should be considered as a relevant target for the development of novel pharmacological tools and medical protocols involving the use of opioids. PMID:26554831

  3. Serotonergic mechanisms involved in calcitonin potentiation of kappa-opioid receptor-mediated effects on adrenal secretion.

    PubMed

    Ormazábal, M J; Milanés, M V; Martín, M I

    1997-12-04

    Calcitonin can selectively modulate the effects of opioids on the rat hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and increase the release of corticosterone induced by a kappa-opioid receptor agonist. Considerable evidence supports the involvement of opioid and serotonergic systems in the analgesic effect of calcitonin. In this study, the involvement of hypothalamic serotonergic pathways in the calcitonin potentiation of the effect of (trans-(+/-)-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2-(1-pyrrolidinyl) cyclohexyl]-benzeneacetamide methane sulphonate (U-50,488H) on the secretion of corticosterone was examined. The correlation between the calcitonin-induced potentiation of the pituitary adrenal response to U-50,488H and changes in serotonin turnover was evaluated. Our results show that the increase in the release of corticosterone induced by treatment with calcitonin + U-50,488H was not evident when the turnover of serotonin was decreased by inhibition of its synthesis with m-hydroxybenzylhydrazine (NSD 1015) or by blockade of its metabolism with trans-2-phenylcyclopropylamine (tranylcypromine). Although other factors can not be discarded, from the present data it can be suggested that the serotonergic system plays an important role in the interaction calcitonin-kappa-opioid receptor agonist in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.

  4. Different mechanisms of homologous and heterologous μ-opioid receptor phosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Mann, Anika; Illing, Susann; Miess, Elke; Schulz, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    The efficiency of μ-opioid receptor signalling is tightly regulated and ultimately limited by the coordinated phosphorylation of intracellular serine and threonine residues. Here, we review and discuss recent progress in the generation and application of phosphosite-specific μ-opioid receptor antibodies, which have proved to be excellent tools for monitoring the spatial and temporal dynamics of receptor phosphorylation and dephosphorylation. Agonist-induced phosphorylation of μ-opioid receptors occurs at a conserved 10 residue sequence (370) TREHPSTANT(379) in the receptor's carboxyl-terminal cytoplasmic tail. Diverse opioids induce receptor phosphorylation at S375, present in the middle of this sequence, but only high-efficacy opioids have the ability to drive higher order phosphorylation on flanking residues (T370, T376 and T379). S375 is the initiating residue in a hierarchical phosphorylation cascade. In contrast, agonist-independent heterologous μ-opioid receptor phosphorylation occurs primarily at T370. The combination of phosphosite-specific antibodies and siRNA knockdown screening also facilitated the identification of relevant kinases and phosphatases. In fact, morphine induces a selective S375 phosphorylation that is predominantly catalysed by GPCR kinase 5 (GRK5), whereas multisite phosphorylation induced by high-efficacy opioids specifically requires GRK2/3. By contrast, T370 phosphorylation stimulated by phorbol esters or heterologous activation of Gq -coupled receptors is mediated by PKCα. Rapid μ-opioid receptor dephosphorylation occurs at or near the plasma membrane and is catalysed by protein phosphatase 1γ (PP1γ). These findings suggest that there are distinct phosphorylation motifs for homologous and heterologous regulation of μ-opioid receptor phosphorylation. However, it remains to be seen to what extent different μ-opioid receptor phosphorylation patterns contribute to the development of tolerance and dependence in vivo. This article

  5. Opioid Regulation of Spinal Cord Plasticity: Evidence the Kappa-2 Opioid Receptor Agonist GR89696 Inhibits Learning within the Rat Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Washburn, Stephanie N.; Maultsby, Marissa L.; Puga, Denise A.; Grau, James W.

    2007-01-01

    Spinal cord neurons can support a simple form of instrumental learning. In this paradigm, rats completely transected at the second thoracic vertebra learn to minimize shock exposure by maintaining a hindlimb in a flexed position. Prior exposure to uncontrollable shock (shock independent of leg position) disrupts this learning. This learning deficit lasts for at least 24 hours and depends on the NMDA receptor. Intrathecal application of an opioid antagonist blocks the expression, but not the induction, of the learning deficit. A comparison of selective opioid antagonists implicated the kappa opioid receptor. The present experiments further explore how opioids affect spinal instrumental learning using selective opioid agonists. Male Sprague Dawley rats were given an intrathecal injection (30 nmol) of a kappa-1 (U69593), a kappa-2 (GR89696), a mu (DAMGO), or a delta opioid receptor agonist (DPDPE) 10 minutes prior to instrumental testing. Only the kappa-2 opioid receptor agonist GR89696 inhibited acquisition (Experiment 1). GR89696 inhibited learning in a dose dependent fashion (Experiment 2), but had no effect on instrumental performance in previously trained subjects (Experiment 3). Pretreatment with an opioid antagonist (naltrexone) blocked the GR89696-induced learning deficit (Experiment 4). Administration of GR89696 did not produce a lasting impairment (Experiment 5) and a moderate dose of GR89696 (6 nmol) reduced the adverse consequences of uncontrollable nociceptive stimulation (Experiment 6). The results suggest that a kappa-2 opioid agonist inhibits neural modifications within the spinal cord. PMID:17983769

  6. Mu opioid modulation of oxytocin secretion in late pregnant and parturient rats. Involvement of noradrenergic neurotransmission.

    PubMed

    Kutlu, Selim; Yilmaz, Bayram; Canpolat, Sinan; Sandal, Suleyman; Ozcan, Mete; Kumru, Selahattin; Kelestimur, Haluk

    2004-01-01

    We have investigated effects of micro- and kappa-opioid agonists and antagonists on plasma oxytocin levels and noradrenaline content in the supraoptic nucleus (SON) and paraventricular nucleus (PVN) of 20-day pregnant rats. beta-Endorphin, oxytocin, estrogen and progesterone profiles in late pregnant and parturient rats were also sought. Stage of estrous cycle was monitored by vaginal smear, and pro-estrous animals were left overnight with male. In the first set of experiments, pregnant rats were monitored and decapitated on days 20 and 21 and after the delivery of second pup. In the second set, 20-day pregnant rats were intracerebroventricularly infused with morphine (50 microg/10 microl), U50,488H (kappa-agonist; 50 microg/10 microl), clocinnamox (micro-antagonist; 50 microg/10 microl) and norbinaltorphimine (kappa-antagonist; 50 microg/10 microl). Controls received saline alone. Serum estrogen and progesterone levels were measured by enzyme immunoassay, and plasma oxytocin and beta-endorphin by radioimmunoassay. Noradrenaline and its metabolite (3,4-dihydroxyphenylglycol) were determined in micropunched hypothalamic nuclei by HPLC-ECD. In parturient rats, oxytocin levels were increased (p < 0.05) and beta-endorphin decreased (p < 0.01) compared to 20-day pregnant animals. Serum progesterone concentrations progressively declined towards parturition (p < 0.001). Clocinnamox raised oxytocin levels (p < 0.01) while U50,488H caused decreases (p < 0.05). Noradrenaline content was elevated by clocinnamox in the SON (p < 0.01) and PVN (p < 0.05) compared to control values. Other agonists and antagonists had no significant effect on the noradrenergic neurotransmission or oxytocin secretion. We suggest that noradrenaline may mediate the inhibitory effects of micro-opioids on oxytocin release. Our findings have also shown that kappa-opioid receptors are not involved in modulation of oxytocin neurons in late pregnant rats. Copyright 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

  7. Human Opiorphin, a natural antinociceptive modulator of opioid-dependent pathways

    PubMed Central

    Wisner, Anne; Dufour, Evelyne; Messaoudi, Michaël; Nejdi, Amine; Marcel, Audrey; Ungeheuer, Marie-Noelle; Rougeot, Catherine

    2006-01-01

    Mammalian zinc ectopeptidases play important roles in turning off neural and hormonal peptide signals at the cell surface, notably those processing sensory information. We report here the discovery of a previously uncharacterized physiological inhibitor of enkephalin-inactivating zinc ectopeptidases in humans, which we have named Opiorphin. It is a QRFSR peptide that inhibits two enkephalin-catabolizing ectoenzymes, human neutral ecto-endopeptidase, hNEP (EC 3.4.24.11), and human ecto-aminopeptidase, hAP-N (EC 3.4.11.2). Opiorphin displays potent analgesic activity in chemical and mechanical pain models by activating endogenous opioid-dependent transmission. Its function is closely related to the rat sialorphin peptide, which is an inhibitor of pain perception and acts by potentiating endogenous μ- and δ-opioid receptor-dependent enkephalinergic pathways. Here we demonstrate the functional specificity in vivo of human Opiorphin. The pain-suppressive potency of Opiorphin is as effective as morphine in the behavioral rat model of acute mechanical pain, the pin-pain test. Thus, our discovery of Opiorphin is extremely exciting from a physiological point of view in the context of endogenous opioidergic pathways, notably in modulating mood-related states and pain sensation. Furthermore, because of its in vivo properties, Opiorphin may have therapeutic implications. PMID:17101991

  8. Human Opiorphin, a natural antinociceptive modulator of opioid-dependent pathways.

    PubMed

    Wisner, Anne; Dufour, Evelyne; Messaoudi, Michaël; Nejdi, Amine; Marcel, Audrey; Ungeheuer, Marie-Noelle; Rougeot, Catherine

    2006-11-21

    Mammalian zinc ectopeptidases play important roles in turning off neural and hormonal peptide signals at the cell surface, notably those processing sensory information. We report here the discovery of a previously uncharacterized physiological inhibitor of enkephalin-inactivating zinc ectopeptidases in humans, which we have named Opiorphin. It is a QRFSR peptide that inhibits two enkephalin-catabolizing ectoenzymes, human neutral ecto-endopeptidase, hNEP (EC 3.4.24.11), and human ecto-aminopeptidase, hAP-N (EC 3.4.11.2). Opiorphin displays potent analgesic activity in chemical and mechanical pain models by activating endogenous opioid-dependent transmission. Its function is closely related to the rat sialorphin peptide, which is an inhibitor of pain perception and acts by potentiating endogenous mu- and delta-opioid receptor-dependent enkephalinergic pathways. Here we demonstrate the functional specificity in vivo of human Opiorphin. The pain-suppressive potency of Opiorphin is as effective as morphine in the behavioral rat model of acute mechanical pain, the pin-pain test. Thus, our discovery of Opiorphin is extremely exciting from a physiological point of view in the context of endogenous opioidergic pathways, notably in modulating mood-related states and pain sensation. Furthermore, because of its in vivo properties, Opiorphin may have therapeutic implications.

  9. Activation of μ opioid receptors in the LPBN facilitates sodium intake in rats.

    PubMed

    Pavan, Carolina G; Roncari, Camila F; Barbosa, Silas P; De Paula, Patrícia M; Colombari, Débora S A; De Luca, Laurival A; Colombari, Eduardo; Menani, José V

    2015-07-15

    Important inhibitory mechanisms for the control of water and sodium intake are present in the lateral parabrachial nucleus (LPBN). Opioid receptors are expressed by LPBN neurons and injections of β-endorphin (nonspecific opioid receptor agonist) in this area induce 0.3M NaCl and water intake in satiated rats. In the present study, we investigated the effects of the injections of endomorphin-1 (μ opioid receptor agonist) alone or combined with the blockade of μ, κ or δ opioid receptors into the LPBN on 0.3M NaCl and water intake induced by subcutaneous injections of the diuretic furosemide (FURO) combined with low dose of the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor captopril (CAP). Male Holtzman rats with stainless steel cannulas implanted bilaterally in the LPBN were used. Bilateral injections of endomorphin-1 (0.1, 0.25, 0.5, 1.0, 2.0 and 4.0nmol/0.2μl) into the LPBN increased 0.3M NaCl and water intake induced by FURO+CAP. The previous blockade of μ opioid receptor with CTAP (1.0nmol/0.2μl) into the LPBN reduced the effect of endomorphin-1 on FURO+CAP-induced 0.3M NaCl. GNTI (κ opioid receptor antagonist; 2.0nmol/0.2μl) and naltrindole (δ opioid receptor antagonist; 2.0nmol/0.2μl) injected into the LPBN did not change the effects of endomorphin-1 on FURO+CAP-induced 0.3M NaCl. The results suggest that μ opioid receptors in the LPBN are involved in the control of sodium intake. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Involvement of opioid receptor subtypes in both stimulatory and inhibitory effects of the opioid peptides on prolactin secretion during pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Soaje, M; Deis, R P

    2004-04-01

    1. We have previously demonstrated the existence of a dual neuromodulatory regulation of prolactin secretion by the opioid system. In the present work, we evaluated the opioid receptor subtypes involved in both the stimulatory and the inhibitory regulation of prolactin secretion in pregnant rats. 2. Specific opioid agonists and antagonists were administered intracerebro ventricular (i.c.v.) to rats on day 3 and on day 19 pregnancy in rats of pretreated with mifepristone. Blood samples were obtained after decapitation at 12.00 and 18.00 h. Serum prolactin levels were measured by RIA. 3. The mu-selective agonist DAMGO and beta-endorphin caused a significant increase in serum prolactin secretion on day 3 of pregnancy, during the diurnal surge and intersurge period. Pretreatment with naloxone prevented the increase on prolactin levels induced by DAMGO. The administration of U-50,488, a kappa-selective agonist or DPDPE, a delta-selective agonist, did not modify serum prolactin concentration while the mu1-antagonist naloxonazine reduced significantly serum prolactin levels. On day 19 of pregnancy, the release of prolactin induced by mifepristone was significantly increase by naloxonazine, while the kappa-antagonist nor-binaltorfimine induced only a small but significant increase. No effect was observed after administration of the delta-antagonist naltrindole. 4. We conclude that the mu-opioid receptor seems to be more specifically involved in both the stimulatory and inhibitory regulation by the opioid system on prolactin secretion during pregnancy. The increase on serum prolactin levels on day 3 after administration of DAMGO and beta-endorphin may suggest the participation of other regulatory mechanisms as the dopaminergic and serotoninergic systems. On day 19, only the endogenous ligands delta did not participate in the regulation of prolactin secretion, while the participation of the kappa-opioid receptor was significantly less effective than the endogenous ligand mu

  11. Cyclic endomorphin analogs in targeting opioid receptors to achieve pain relief.

    PubMed

    Janecka, Anna; Gentilucci, Luca

    2014-01-01

    Endomorphins, the endogenous ligands of the µ-opioid receptor, are attractive candidates for opioid-based pain-relieving agents. These tetrapeptides, with their remarkable affinity for the µ-opioid receptor, display favorable antinociceptive activity when injected directly into the brain of experimental animals. However, the application of endomorphins as clinical analgesics has been impeded by their instability in body fluids and inability to reach the brain after systemic administration. Among numerous modifications of the endomorphin structure aimed at improving their pharmacological properties, cyclization can be viewed as an interesting option. Here, we have summarized recent advances in obtaining endomorphin-based cyclic peptide analogs.

  12. Novel approaches for the treatment of psychostimulant and opioid abuse – focus on opioid receptor-based therapies

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, Chris P.; Husbands, Steve M.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Psychostimulant and opioid addiction are poorly treated. The majority of abstinent users relapse back to drug-taking within a year of abstinence, making ‘anti-relapse’ therapies the focus of much current research. There are two fundamental challenges to developing novel treatments for drug addiction. Firstly, there are 3 key stimuli that precipitate relapse back to drug-taking: stress, presentation of drug-conditioned cue, taking a small dose of drug. The most successful novel treatment would be effective against all 3 stimuli. Secondly, a large number of drug users are poly-drug users: taking more than one drug of abuse at a time. The ideal anti-addiction treatment would therefore be effective against all classes of drugs of abuse. Areas Covered In this review, the authors discuss the clinical need and animal models used to uncover potential novel treatments. There is a very broad range of potential treatment approaches and targets currently being examined as potential anti-relapse therapies. These broadly fit into 2 categories: ‘memory-based’ and ‘receptor-based’ and the authors discuss the key targets here within. Expert opinion Opioid receptors and ligands have been widely studied, and research into how different opioid subtypes affect behaviours related to addiction (reward, dysphoria, motivation) suggests that they are tractable targets as anti-relapse treatments. Regarding opioid ligands as novel ‘anti-relapse’ medications targets - research suggests that a ‘non-selective’ approach to targeting opioid receptors will be the most effective. PMID:25253272

  13. Effects of morphine on pentobarbital-induced responses in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Park, Y; Ho, I K; Jang, C G; Tanaka, S; Ma, T; Loh, H H; Ko, K H

    2001-03-15

    Effects of morphine on the potentiation of pentobarbital-induced responses were investigated using mu-opioid receptor knockout mice. The duration of loss of righting reflex, hypothermia, and loss of motor coordination induced by pentobarbital were measured after pretreatment with either morphine or saline. Morphine pretreatment failed to show potentiation of both pentobarbital-induced loss of righting reflex and hypothermia in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice, while it significantly potentiated these responses in the wild-type controls. For motor incoordination test, morphine potentiated pentobarbital-induced motor incoordination in the wild-type mice. However, morphine may have opposite effects in the mu-opioid receptor knockout mice. These results demonstrate that synergism between morphine and pentobarbital is not detected in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice and that potentiation of pentobarbital-induced loss of righting reflex and hypothermia by morphine is mediated through mu-opioid receptor. It was interesting to note that pentobarbital-induced decrease in body temperature was less severe in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice than in wild-type mice.

  14. Stimulatory effect of stevioside on peripheral mu opioid receptors in animals.

    PubMed

    Yang, Po-Sheng; Lee, Jie-Jen; Tsao, Chiung-Wen; Wu, Hung-Tsung; Cheng, Juei-Tang

    2009-04-17

    Stevioside is a dietary supplement widely used as a sweetener to prevent hyperglycemic disorders. However, the action mechanisms of this substance for glucose homeostasis remain obscure. In the present study, a dose-related plasma glucose reduction was observed in Wistar rats receiving intraperitoneally injections of stevioside. Similar to the regulation of glucose metabolism by the activation of mu opioid receptors, this action of stevioside was reversed by naloxonazine under the blockade of mu opioid receptors. We also found that stevioside increased glycogen synthesis in isolated hepatocytes, which was concentration-dependently blocked by naloxonazine. Stevioside did not modify the plasma beta-endorphin levels in Wistar rats but it directly increased the phosphorylation of mu opioid receptors in Chinese hamster ovary cells transfected with mu opioid receptors. Unlike morphine, chronic administration of stevioside did not induce the withdrawal signs in mice. Furthermore, stevioside by intraperitoneal injections did not influence the feeding behaviors of rats. By contrast, intracerebroventricular injections of stevioside increased the rats' food intake, which was also inhibited by pretreatment with naloxonazine. These results showed that it is difficult for stevioside to enter the brain. Stevioside has the ability to activate peripheral mu opioid receptors for lowering plasma glucose and to increase glycogen synthesis in liver. Thus, the stimulation of peripheral mu opioid receptors is responsible for the action of stevioside in the regulation of glucose homeostasis.

  15. Comparison of five benzodiazepine-receptor agonists on buprenorphine-induced mu-opioid receptor regulation.

    PubMed

    Poisnel, Géraldine; Dhilly, Martine; Le Boisselier, Reynald; Barre, Louisa; Debruyne, Danièle

    2009-05-01

    In this study, we compared the effects of five short-, medium-, or long-acting benzodiazepine-receptor agonists (BZDs) [alprazolam (APZ), clonazepam (CLZ), flunitrazepam (FLZ), loprazolam (LPZ), zolpidem (ZLP)], at two distinct doses, 0.2 and 2 mg/kg, on the cell surface regulation of mu-opioid receptor induced by 0.15 mg/kg buprenorphine (BPN) in specific regions of the rat brain. Using 0.312 - 5 nM [(3)H]-DAMGO concentrations and Scatchard plot analysis, B(max) (maximal receptor density) and K(d) (dissociation constant) were determined at different brain regions of interest (amygdala, cortex, hippocampus, hypothalamus, thalamus). Acute BPN induced an expected down-regulation and addition of each of the BZDs to BPN induced less down-regulation than did BPN alone, sometimes while altering affinity. Some significant differences in the intensity of these effects were observed between BZDs. FLZ that is widely abused and enlarges BPN toxicity appeared the most potent to increase mu-cell surface receptor density at the lowest dose of 0.2 mg/kg. Besides, LPZ for which the effect on mu-opioid-receptor regulation appeared lower is considered to have a low risk of dependence in the epidemiological data banks. CLZ and ZLP (2 mg/kg) induced the strongest modification on mu-opioid-receptor density, but a substantial decrease in affinity could minimize the functional consequences. The reported changes were maximal in the amygdala, hippocampus, and thalamus. Among people using BPN and BZDs, the effects described here are likely to influence addictive behaviors and induce toxic effects that could be quantitatively different due to the quality of the BZD.

  16. Focal kappa-opioid receptor-mediated dependence and withdrawal in the nucleus paragigantocellularis.

    PubMed

    Sinchaisuk, S; Ho, I K; Rockhold, R W

    2002-12-01

    The nucleus paragigantocellularis (PGi) has been hypothesized to play an important role in the development of physical dependence on opioids, including the prototype mu-opioid receptor agonist, morphine, and the mixed agonist/antagonist, butorphanol, which shows selective kappa-opioid receptor agonist activity, in rats. In confirmation of previous work, electrical stimulation of the PGi in opioid-nai;ve rats induced stimulus-intensity-related, withdrawal-like behaviors similar to those observed during naloxone-precipitated withdrawal from dependence upon butorphanol. Novel findings were made in rats surgically implanted with cannulae aimed at the lateral ventricle and the right PGi and made physically dependent by intracerebroventricular infusion of either morphine (26 nmol/microl/h) or butorphanol (26 nmol/microl/h) through an osmotic minipump for 3 days. Two hours following termination of the opioid infusion, microinjections of naloxone (11 nmol/400 nl), a nonselective opioid receptor antagonist, or nor-binaltorphimine (nor-BNI) (3.84 nmol/400 nl), a selective kappa-opioid receptor antagonist, were made into the PGi of morphine-dependent and butorphanol-dependent rats. Discrete PGi injections precipitated withdrawal behaviors, with significant (P<.05) increases noted in the incidence of teeth chattering, wet-dog shakes, and scratching. Composite scores for behavioral withdrawal were significantly higher in nor-BNI-precipitated, butorphanol-dependent rats (score=6.8+/-0.6), in naloxone-precipitated, butorphanol-dependent rats (8.9+/-0.8), and in naloxone-precipitated, morphine-dependent rats (11.5+/-0.9) than in all other groups. Both kappa- and mu-opioid receptor mediated dependence can be demonstrated at the level of a discrete medullary site, the PGi, which further supports a specific role for this nucleus in elicitation of behavioral responses during opioid withdrawal.

  17. Opioid receptors and cardioprotection – ‘opioidergic conditioning’ of the heart

    PubMed Central

    Headrick, John P; See Hoe, Louise E; Du Toit, Eugene F; Peart, Jason N

    2015-01-01

    Ischaemic heart disease (IHD) remains a major cause of morbidity/mortality globally, firmly established in Westernized or ‘developed’ countries and rising in prevalence in developing nations. Thus, cardioprotective therapies to limit myocardial damage with associated ischaemia–reperfusion (I–R), during infarction or surgical ischaemia, is a very important, although still elusive, clinical goal. The opioid receptor system, encompassing the δ (vas deferens), κ (ketocyclazocine) and μ (morphine) opioid receptors and their endogenous opioid ligands (endorphins, dynorphins, enkephalins), appears as a logical candidate for such exploitation. This regulatory system may orchestrate organism and organ responses to stress, induces mammalian hibernation and associated metabolic protection, triggers powerful adaptive stress resistance in response to ischaemia/hypoxia (preconditioning), and mediates cardiac benefit stemming from physical activity. In addition to direct myocardial actions, central opioid receptor signalling may also enhance the ability of the heart to withstand I–R injury. The δ- and κ-opioid receptors are strongly implicated in cardioprotection across models and species (including anti-infarct and anti-arrhythmic actions), with mixed evidence for μ opioid receptor-dependent protection in animal and human tissues. A small number of clinical trials have provided evidence of cardiac benefit from morphine or remifentanil in cardiopulmonary bypass or coronary angioplasty patients, although further trials of subtype-specific opioid receptor agonists are needed. The precise roles and utility of this GPCR family in healthy and diseased human myocardium, and in mediating central and peripheral survival responses, warrant further investigation, as do the putative negative influences of ageing, IHD co-morbidities, and relevant drugs on opioid receptor signalling and protective responses. PMID:25521834

  18. Opioid and nicotine receptors affect growth regulation of human lung cancer cell lines

    SciTech Connect

    Maneckjee, R.; Minna, J.D. Uniformed Services Univ. of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD )

    1990-05-01

    Using specific radioactively-labeled ligands, the authors find that lung cancer cell lines of diverse histologic types express multiple, high-affinity membrane receptors for {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists and for nicotine and {alpha}-bungarotoxin. These receptors are biologically active because cAMP levels decreased in lung cancer cells after opioid and nicotine application. Nicotine at concentrations found in the blood of smokers had no effect on in vitro lung cancer cell growth, whereas {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists at low concentrations inhibited lung cancer growth in vitro. They also found that lung cancer cells expressed various combinations of immunoreactive opioid peptides ({beta}-endorphin, enkephalin, or dynorphin), suggesting the participation of opioids in a negative autocrine loop or tumor-suppressing system. Due to the almost universal exposure of patients with lung cancer to nicotine, they tested whether nicotine affected the response of lung cancer cell growth to opioids and found that nicotine at concentrations of 100-200 nM partially or totally reversed opioid-induced growth inhibition in 9/14 lung cancer cell lines. These in vitro results for lung cancer cells suggest that opioids could function as part of a tumor suppressor system and that nicotine can function to circumvent this system in the pathogenesis of lung cancer.

  19. Opioid Drug Abuse and Modulation of Immune Function: Consequences in the Susceptibility to Opportunistic Infections

    PubMed Central

    Roy, Sabita; Ninkovic, Jana; Banerjee, Santanu; Charboneau, Richard; Das, Subhas; Dutta, Raini; Kirchner, Varvara; Koodie, Lisa; Ma, Jing; Meng, Jingjing

    2013-01-01

    Infection rate among intravenous drug users (IDU) is higher than the general public, and is the major cause of morbidity and hospitalization in the IDU population. Epidemiologic studies provide data on increased prevalence of opportunistic bacterial infections such as TB and pneumonia, and viral infections such as HIV-1 and hepatitis in the IDU population. An important component in the intravenous drug abuse population and in patients receiving medically indicated chronic opioid treatment is opioid withdrawal. Data on bacterial virulence in the context of opioid withdrawal suggest that mice undergoing withdrawal had shortened survival and increased bacterial load in response to Salmonella infection. As the body of evidence in support of opioid dependency and its immunosuppressive effects is growing, it is imperative to understand the mechanisms by which opioids exert these effects and identify the populations at risk that would benefit the most from the interventions to counteract opioid immunosuppressive effects. Thus, it is important to refine the existing animal model to closely match human conditions and to cross-validate these findings through carefully controlled human studies. Better understanding of the mechanisms will facilitate the search for new therapeutic modalities to counteract adverse effects including increased infection rates. This review will summarize the effects of morphine on innate and adaptive immunity, identify the role of the mu opioid receptor in these functions and the signal transduction activated in the process. The role of opioid withdrawal in immunosuppression and the clinical relevance of these findings will also be discussed. PMID:21789507

  20. Heterologous desensitization of opioid receptors by chemokines inhibits chemotaxis and enhances the perception of pain.

    PubMed

    Szabo, Imre; Chen, Xiao-Hong; Xin, Li; Adler, Martin W; Howard, O M Z; Oppenheim, Joost J; Rogers, Thomas J

    2002-08-06

    The chemokines use G protein-coupled receptors to regulate the migratory and proadhesive responses of leukocytes. Based on observations that G protein-coupled receptors undergo heterologous desensitization, we have examined the ability of chemokines to also influence the perception of pain by cross-desensitizing opioid G protein-coupled receptors function in vitro and in vivo. We find that the chemotactic activities of both mu- and delta-opioid receptors are desensitized following activation of the chemokine receptors CCR5, CCR2, CCR7, and CXCR4 but not of the CXCR1 or CXCR2 receptors. Furthermore, we also find that pretreatment with RANTES/CCL5, the ligand for CCR1, and CCR5 or SDF-1alpha/CXCL12, the ligand for CXCR4, followed by opioid administration into the periaqueductal gray matter of the brain results in an increased rat tail flick response to a painful stimulus. Because chemokine administration into the periaqueductal gray matter inhibits opioid-induced analgesia, we propose that the activation of proinflammatory chemokine receptors down-regulates the analgesic functions of opioid receptors, and this enhances the perception of pain at inflammatory sites.

  1. Opiates modulate thermosensation by internalizing cold receptor TRPM8.

    PubMed

    Shapovalov, George; Gkika, Dimitra; Devilliers, Maily; Kondratskyi, Artem; Gordienko, Dmitri; Busserolles, Jerome; Bokhobza, Alexandre; Eschalier, Alain; Skryma, Roman; Prevarskaya, Natalia

    2013-08-15

    Stimulation of μ-opioid receptors (OPRMs) brings powerful pain relief, but it also leads to the development of tolerance and addiction. Ensuing withdrawal in abstinent patients manifests itself with severe symptoms, including cold hyperalgesia, often preventing addicted patients from successfully completing the rehabilitation. Unsurprisingly, OPRMs have been a central point of many studies. Nonetheless, a satisfactory understanding of the pathways leading to distorted sensory responses during opiate administration and abstinence is far from complete. Here, we present a mechanism that leads to modulation by OPRMs of one of the sensory responses, thermosensation. Activation of OPRM1 leads to internalization of a cold-sensor TRPM8, which can be reversed by a follow-up treatment with the inverse OPRM agonist naloxone. Knockout of TRPM8 protein leads to a decrease in morphine-induced cold analgesia. The proposed pathway represents a universal mechanism that is probably shared by regulatory pathways modulating general pain sensation in response to opioid treatment.

  2. Deciphering µ-opioid receptor phosphorylation and dephosphorylation in HEK293 cells

    PubMed Central

    Doll, Christian; Pöll, Florian; Peuker, Kenneth; Loktev, Anastasia; Glück, Laura; Schulz, Stefan

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The molecular basis of agonist-selective signalling at the µ-opioid receptor is poorly understood. We have recently shown that full agonists such as [D-Ala2-MePhe4-Gly-ol]enkephalin (DAMGO) stimulate the phosphorylation of a number of carboxyl-terminal phosphate acceptor sites including threonine 370 (Thr370) and serine 375 (Ser375), and that is followed by a robust receptor internalization. In contrast, morphine promotes a selective phosphorylation of Ser375 without causing rapid receptor internalization. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH Here, we identify kinases and phosphatases that mediate agonist-dependent phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of the µ-opioid receptor using a combination of phosphosite-specific antibodies and siRNA knock-down screening in HEK293 cells. KEY RESULTS We found that DAMGO-driven phosphorylation of Thr370 and Ser375 was preferentially catalysed by G-protein-coupled receptor kinases (GRKs) 2 and 3, whereas morphine-driven Ser375 phosphorylation was preferentially catalysed by GRK5. On the functional level, inhibition of GRK expression resulted in enhanced µ-opioid receptor signalling and reduced receptor internalization. Analysis of GRK5-deficient mice revealed that GRK5 selectively contributes to morphine-induced Ser375 phosphorylation in brain tissue. We also identified protein phosphatase 1γ as a µ-opioid receptor phosphatase that catalysed Thr370 and Ser375 dephosphorylation at or near the plasma membrane within minutes after agonist removal, which in turn facilitates receptor recycling. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS Together, the morphine-activated µ-opioid receptor is a good substrate for phosphorylation by GRK5 but a poor substrate for GRK2/3. GRK5 phosphorylates µ-opioid receptors selectively on Ser375, which is not sufficient to drive significant receptor internalization. PMID:22725608

  3. Selective opioid growth factor receptor antagonists based on a stilbene isostere.

    PubMed

    Stockdale, David P; Titunick, Michelle B; Biegler, Jessica M; Reed, Jessie L; Hartung, Alyssa M; Wiemer, David F; McLaughlin, Patricia J; Neighbors, Jeffrey D

    2017-08-15

    As part of an ongoing drug development effort aimed at selective opioid receptor ligands based on the pawhuskin natural products we have synthesized a small set of amide isosteres. These amides were centered on lead compounds which are selective antagonists for the delta and kappa opioid receptors. The amide isomers revealed here show dramatically different activity from the parent stilbene compounds. Three of the isomers synthesized showed antagonist activity for the opioid growth factor (OGF)/opioid growth factor receptor (OGFR) axis which is involved in cellular and organ growth control. This cellular signaling mechanism is targeted by "low-dose" naltrexone therapy which is being tested clinically for multiple sclerosis, Crohn's disease, cancer, and wound healing disorders. The compounds described here are the first selective small molecule ligands for the OGF/OGFR system and will serve as important leads and probes for further study. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Modulation of nociception by social factors in rodents: contribution of the opioid system.

    PubMed

    D'Amato, Francesca R; Pavone, Flaminia

    2012-11-01

    The opioid system is involved in the regulation of several behavioral and physiological responses, controlling pain, reward, and addictive behaviors. Opioid administration, depending on drugs and doses, usually affects sociability reducing interactions between conspecifics, whereas some affiliative behaviors such as sexual activity, social grooming, and play behavior increase the endogenous opioid activity. The possible interaction between endogenous opioids released during socio/sexual behavior and their analgesic effect on pain response is reviewed in the rodent literature. Direct evidence for socially mediated opioid changes resulting in increase in nociceptive threshold derives from studies exploring the effects of defeat experiences, social isolation, maternal, sexual behavior, and social reunion among kin or familiar animals in laboratory rodents. Indirect evidence for endogenous activation of the opioid system, possibly affecting pain sensitivity, derives from studies investigating the relevance of natural social reward using the conditioned place preference protocols or analyzing ultrasonic vocalizations associated to positive affective contexts. Finally, genetic and epigenetic factors that affect the opioid system during development are reported to be involved in modulating the response to social stimuli as well as nociception. All studies highlight the relevance of affiliative contact behavior between conspecifics that is responsible for the activation of the endogenous mu-opioid system, inducing nociceptive threshold increase.

  5. Synthesis and opioid receptor binding affinities of 2-substituted and 3-aminomorphinans: ligands for mu, kappa, and delta opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Decker, Michael; Si, Yu-Gui; Knapp, Brian I; Bidlack, Jean M; Neumeyer, John L

    2010-01-14

    The phenolic group of the potent mu and kappa opioid morphinan agonist/antagonists cyclorphan and butorphan was replaced by phenylamino and benzylamino groups including compounds with para-substituents in the benzene ring. These compounds are highly potent mu and kappa ligands, e.g., p-methoxyphenylaminocyclorphan showing a K(i) of 0.026 nM at the mu receptor and a K(i) of 0.03 nM at the kappa receptor. Phenyl carbamates and phenylureas were synthesized and investigated. Selective o-formylation of butorphan and levorphanol was achieved. This reaction opened the way to a large set of 2-substituted 3-hydroxymorphinans, including 2-hydroxymethyl-, 2-aminomethyl-, and N-substituted 2-aminomethyl-3-hydroxymorphinans. Bivalent ligands bridged in the 2-position were also synthesized and connected with secondary and tertiary aminomethyl groups, amide bonds, and hydroxymethylene groups, respectively. Although most of the 2-substituted morphinans showed considerably lower affinities compared to their parent compounds, the bivalent ligand approach led to significantly higher affinities compared to the univalent 2-substituted morphinans.

  6. Delta- and kappa-opioid receptors in the caudal midline medulla mediate haemorrhage-evoked hypotension.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Luke A; Keay, Kevin A; Bandler, Richard

    2002-04-16

    In mammals blood loss can trigger, shock, an abrupt, life-threatening hypotension and bradycardia. In the halothane-anaesthetised rat this response is blocked by inactivation of a discrete, vasodepressor area in the caudal midline medulla (CMM). Haemorrhagic shock is blocked also by systemic or ventricular injections of the opioid antagonist, naloxone. This study investigated, in the halothane anaesthetised rat, the contribution of delta-, kappa- and mu-opioid receptors in the CMM vasodepressor region to haemorrhage-evoked shock (i.e. hypotension and bradycardia) and its recovery. It was found that microinjections into the CMM of the delta-opioid receptor antagonist, naltrindole delayed and attenuated the hypotension and bradycardia evoked by haemorrhage, but did not promote recompensation. In contrast, CMM microinjections of the kappa-opioid receptor antagonist, nor-binaltorphamine, although it did not alter haemorrhage-evoked hypotension and bradycardia, did lead to a rapid restoration of AP, but not HR. CMM microinjections of the mu-opioid receptor antagonist, CTAP had no effect on haemorrhage-evoked shock or recompensation. These data indicate that delta- and kappa- (but not mu-) opioid receptor-mediated events within the CMM contribute to the hypotension and bradycardia evoked by haemorrhage and the effectiveness of naloxone in reversing shock.

  7. Striatal opioid receptor availability is related to acute and chronic pain perception in arthritis: does opioid adaptation increase resilience to chronic pain?

    PubMed

    Brown, Christopher A; Matthews, Julian; Fairclough, Michael; McMahon, Adam; Barnett, Elizabeth; Al-Kaysi, Ali; El-Deredy, Wael; Jones, Anthony K P

    2015-11-01

    The experience of pain in humans is modulated by endogenous opioids, but it is largely unknown how the opioid system adapts to chronic pain states. Animal models of chronic pain point to upregulation of opioid receptors (OpR) in the brain, with unknown functional significance. We sought evidence for a similar relationship between chronic pain and OpR availability in humans. Using positron emission tomography and the radiotracer (11)C-diprenorphine, patients with arthritis pain (n = 17) and healthy controls (n = 9) underwent whole-brain positron emission tomography scanning to calculate parametric maps of OpR availability. Consistent with the upregulation hypothesis, within the arthritis group, greater OpR availability was found in the striatum (including the caudate) of patients reporting higher levels of recent chronic pain, as well as regions of interest in the descending opioidergic pathway including the anterior cingulate cortex, thalamus, and periaqueductal gray. The functional significance of striatal changes were clarified with respect to acute pain thresholds: data across patients and controls revealed that striatal OpR availability was related to reduced pain perception. These findings are consistent with the view that chronic pain may upregulate OpR availability to dampen pain. Finally, patients with arthritis pain, compared with healthy controls, had overall less OpR availability within the striatum specifically, consistent with the greater endogenous opioid binding that would be expected in chronic pain states. Our observational evidence points to the need for further studies to establish the causal relationship between chronic pain states and OpR adaptation.

  8. Inhibition of GABAergic Neurotransmission by HIV-1 Tat and Opioid Treatment in the Striatum Involves μ-Opioid Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Changqing; Fitting, Sylvia

    2016-01-01

    Due to combined antiretroviral therapy (cART), human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is considered a chronic disease with high prevalence of mild forms of neurocognitive impairments, also referred to as HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). Although opiate drug use can exacerbate HIV-1 Tat-induced neuronal damage, it remains unknown how and to what extent opioids interact with Tat on the GABAergic system. We conducted whole-cell recordings in mouse striatal slices and examined the effects of HIV-1 Tat in the presence and absence of morphine (1 μM) and damgo (1 μM) on GABAergic neurotransmission. Results indicated a decrease in the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs) and miniature IPSCs (mIPSCs) by Tat (5–50 nM) in a concentration-dependent manner. The significant Tat-induced decrease in IPSCs was abolished when removing extracellular and/or intracellular calcium. Treatment with morphine or damgo alone significantly decreased the frequency, but not amplitude of IPSCs. Interestingly, morphine but not damgo indicated an additional downregulation of the mean frequency of mIPSCs in combination with Tat. Pretreatment with naloxone (1 μM) and CTAP (1 μM) prevented the Tat-induced decrease in sIPSCs frequency but only naloxone prevented the combined Tat and morphine effect on mIPSCs frequency. Results indicate a Tat- or opioid-induced decrease in GABAergic neurotransmission via μ-opioid receptors with combined Tat and morphine effects involving additional opioid receptor-related mechanisms. Exploring the interactions between Tat and opioids on the GABAergic system may help to guide future research on HAND in the context of opiate drug use. PMID:27877102

  9. mu-Opioid receptor knockout mice are insensitive to methamphetamine-induced behavioral sensitization.

    PubMed

    Shen, Xine; Purser, Chris; Tien, Lu-Tai; Chiu, Chi-Tso; Paul, Ian A; Baker, Rodney; Loh, Horace H; Ho, Ing K; Ma, Tangeng

    2010-08-01

    Repeated administration of psychostimulants to rodents can lead to behavioral sensitization. Previous studies, using nonspecific opioid receptor (OR) antagonists, revealed that ORs were involved in modulation of behavioral sensitization to methamphetamine (METH). However, the contribution of OR subtypes remains unclear. In the present study, using mu-OR knockout mice, we examined the role of mu-OR in the development of METH sensitization. Mice received daily intraperitoneal injection of drug or saline for 7 consecutive days to initiate sensitization. To express sensitization, animals received one injection of drug (the same as for initiation) or saline on day 11. Animal locomotor activity and stereotypy were monitored during the periods of initiation and expression of sensitization. Also, the concentrations of METH and its active metabolite amphetamine in the blood were measured after single and repeated administrations of METH. METH promoted significant locomotor hyperactivity at low doses and stereotyped behaviors at relative high doses (2.5 mg/kg and above). Repeated administration of METH led to the initiation and expression of behavioral sensitization in wild-type mice. METH-induced behavioral responses were attenuated in the mu-OR knockout mice. Haloperidol (a dopamine receptor antagonist) showed a more potent effect in counteracting METH-induced stereotypy in the mu-OR knockout mice. Saline did not induce behavioral sensitization in either genotype. No significant difference was observed in disposition of METH and amphetamine between the two genotypes. Our study indicated that the mu-opioid system is involved in modulating the development of behavioral sensitization to METH. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  10. μ-Opioid Receptor Knockout Mice Are Insensitive to Methamphetamine-Induced Behavioral Sensitization

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Xine; Purser, Chris; Tien, Lu-Tai; Chiu, Chi-Tso; Paul, Ian A.; Baker, Rodney; Loh, Horace H.; Ho, Ing K.; Ma, Tangeng

    2011-01-01

    Repeated administration of psychostimulants to rodents can lead to behavioral sensitization. Previous studies, using nonspecific opioid receptor (OR) antagonists, revealed that ORs were involved in modulation of behavioral sensitization to methamphetamine (METH). However, the contribution of OR subtypes remains unclear. In the present study, using μ-OR knockout mice, we examined the role of μ-OR in the development of METH sensitization. Mice received daily intraperitoneal injection of drug or saline for 7 consecutive days to initiate sensitization. To express sensitization, animals received one injection of drug (the same as for initiation) or saline on day 11. Animal locomotor activity and stereotypy were monitored during the periods of initiation and expression of sensitization. Also, the concentrations of METH and its active metabolite amphetamine in the blood were measured after single and repeated administrations of METH. METH promoted significant locomotor hyperactivity at low doses and stereotyped behaviors at relative high doses (2.5 mg/kg and above). Repeated administration of METH led to the initiation and expression of behavioral sensitization in wild-type mice. METH-induced behavioral responses were attenuated in the μ-OR knockout mice. Haloperidol (a dopamine receptor antagonist) showed a more potent effect in counteracting METH-induced stereotypy in the μ-OR knockout mice. Saline did not induce behavioral sensitization in either genotype. No significant difference was observed in disposition of METH and amphetamine between the two genotypes. Our study indicated that the μ-opioid system is involved in modulating the development of behavioral sensitization to METH. PMID:20209629

  11. Ethanol-induced social facilitation in adolescent rats: role of endogenous activity at mu opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Varlinskaya, Elena I; Spear, Linda P

    2009-06-01

    Ethanol consumption is considerably elevated during adolescence. Attractiveness of alcohol for humans during the adolescent developmental period is based, in part, on its ability to induce social facilitation--a facilitation of social interactions not only evident in human adolescents but also in adolescent rats. Endogenous opioid systems are among the multiple neural systems implicated in the behavioral and reinforcing effects of ethanol and may play a substantial role in modulating stimulatory effects of low doses of ethanol on social behavior during adolescence. This possibility was explored in the present study through the use of an animal model of peer-directed social behavior. Sprague-Dawley rats were challenged early in adolescence with saline or ethanol intraperitoneally (i.p.), placed into an individual holding cage for 30 minutes, and then tested in a familiar situation with a nonmanipulated partner of the same age and sex. In Experiment 1, each test subject was injected subcutaneously with one of the three doses of a nonselective opioid antagonist naloxone (0, 0.05, and 0.1 mg/kg), 5 minutes prior to the social interaction test and 25 minutes following challenge with saline or ethanol (0.5 g/kg), whereas in Experiment 2 animals were challenged with one of the six doses of ethanol (0, 0.25, 0.5, 0.75, 1.0, and 1.25 g/kg) prior to injection of either saline or naloxone (0.05 mg/kg). In Experiment 3, animals were pretreated i.p. with the selective mu-opioid antagonist CTOP (0, 0.01, 0.025, 0.05, and 0.1 mg/kg) 30 minutes prior to challenge with saline or ethanol (0.5 g/kg). Low doses of ethanol (0.5 and 0.75 g/kg) produced social facilitation, as indexed by significant increases in play fighting and social investigation. Both doses of naloxone and the three highest doses of CTOP blocked the stimulatory effects of ethanol on play fighting but not on social investigation. These effects were not associated with alterations in ethanol pharmacokinetic properties

  12. Ca2+ channel inhibition by endomorphins via the cloned mu-opioid receptor expressed in NG108-15 cells.

    PubMed

    Mima, H; Morikawa, H; Fukuda, K; Kato, S; Shoda, T; Mori, K

    1997-12-11

    Endomorphin-1 and -2, recently isolated endogenous peptides specific for the mu-opioid receptor, inhibited Ca2+ channel currents with EC50 of 6 and 9 nM, respectively, in NG108-15 cells transformed to express the cloned rat mu-opioid receptor. On the other hand, they elicited no response in nontransfected NG108-15 cells. It is concluded that endomorphin-1 and -2 induce Ca2+ channel inhibition by selectively activating the mu-opioid receptor.

  13. Sex and estrogen receptor expression influence opioid peptide levels in the mouse hippocampal mossy fiber pathway.

    PubMed

    Van Kempen, Tracey A; Kahlid, Sana; Gonzalez, Andreina D; Spencer-Segal, Joanna L; Tsuda, Mumeko C; Ogawa, Sonoko; McEwen, Bruce S; Waters, Elizabeth M; Milner, Teresa A

    2013-09-27

    The opioid peptides, dynorphin (DYN) and enkephalin (L-ENK) are contained in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway where they modulate synaptic plasticity. In rats, the levels of DYN and L-ENK immunoreactivity (-ir) are increased when estrogen levels are elevated (Torres-Reveron et al., 2008, 2009). Here, we used quantitative immunocytochemistry to examine whether opioid levels are similarly regulated in wildtype (WT) mice over the estrous cycle, and how these compared to males. Moreover, using estrogen receptor (ER) alpha and beta knock-out mice (AERKO and BERKO, respectively), the present study examined the role of ERs in rapid, membrane-initiated (6 h), or slower, nucleus-initiated (48 h) estradiol effects on mossy fiber opioid levels. Unlike rats, the levels of DYN and L-ENK-ir did not change over the estrous cycle. However, compared to males, females had higher levels of DYN-ir in CA3a and L-ENK-ir in CA3b. In WT and BERKO ovariectomized (OVX) mice, neither DYN- nor L-ENK-ir changed following 6 or 48 h estradiol benzoate (EB) administration. However, DYN-ir significantly increased 48 h after EB in the dentate gyrus (DG) and CA3b of AERKO mice only. These findings suggest that cyclic hormone levels regulate neither DYN nor L-ENK levels in the mouse mossy fiber pathway as they do in the rat. This may be due to species-specific differences in the mossy fiber pathway. However, in the mouse, DYN levels are regulated by exogenous EB in the absence of ERα possibly via an ERβ-mediated pathway requiring new gene transcription.

  14. Ovarian steroids alter mu opioid receptor trafficking in hippocampal parvalbumin GABAergic interneurons.

    PubMed

    Torres-Reveron, Annelyn; Williams, Tanya J; Chapleau, Jeanette D; Waters, Elizabeth M; McEwen, Bruce S; Drake, Carrie T; Milner, Teresa A

    2009-09-01

    The endogenous hippocampal opioid systems are implicated in learning associated with drug use. Recently, we showed that ovarian hormones regulate enkephalin levels in the mossy fiber pathway. This pathway overlaps with parvalbumin (PARV)-basket interneurons that contain the enkephalin-activated mu opioid receptors (MORs) and are important for controlling the "temporal timing" of granule cells. Here, we evaluated the influence of ovarian steroids on the trafficking of MORs in PARV interneurons. Two groups of female rats were analyzed: cycling rats in proestrus (relatively high estrogens) or diestrus; and ovariectomized rats euthanized 6, 24 or 72 h after estradiol benzoate (10 microg, s.c.) administration. Dorsal hippocampal sections were dually immunolabeled for MOR and PARV and examined by light and electron microscopy. As in males, in females MOR-immunoreactivity (-ir) was in numerous PARV-labeled perikarya, dendrites and terminals in the dentate hilar region. Variation in ovarian steroid levels altered the subcellular distribution of MORs in PARV-labeled dendrites but not terminals. In normal cycling rats, MOR-gold particles on the plasma membrane of small PARV-labeled dendrites (area <1 microm2) had higher density in proestrus rats than in diestrus rats. Likewise, in ovariectomized rats MORs showed higher density on the plasma membrane of small PARV-labeled dendrites 72 h after estradiol exposure. The number of PARV-labeled cells was not affected by estrous cycle phase or estrogen levels. These results demonstrate that estrogen levels positively regulate the availability of MORs on GABAergic interneurons in the dentate gyrus, suggesting cooperative interaction between opioids and estrogens in modulating principal cell excitability.

  15. The presence of mu-, delta-, and kappa-opioid receptors in human heart tissue.

    PubMed

    Sobanski, Piotr; Krajnik, Malgorzata; Shaqura, Mohammed; Bloch-Boguslawska, Elzbieta; Schäfer, Michael; Mousa, Shaaban A

    2014-11-01

    Functional evidence suggests that the stimulation of peripheral and central opioid receptors (ORs) is able to modulate heart function. Moreover, selective stimulation of either cardiac or central ORs evokes preconditioning and, therefore, protects the heart against ischemic injury. However, anatomic evidence for OR subtypes in the human heart is scarce. Human heart tissue obtained during autopsy after sudden death was examined immunohistochemically for mu- (MOR), kappa- (KOR), and delta- (DOR) OR subtypes. MOR and DOR immunoreactivity was found mainly in myocardial cells, as well as on sparse individual nerve fibers. KOR immunoreactivity was identified predominantly in myocardial cells and on intrinsic cardiac adrenergic (ICA) cell-like structures. Double immunofluorescence confocal microscopy revealed that DOR colocalized with the neuronal marker PGP9.5, as well as with the sensory neuron marker calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). CGRP-immunoreactive (IR) fibers were detected either in nerve bundles or as sparse individual fibers containing varicose-like structures. Our findings offer the first hint of an anatomic basis for the existence of OR subtypes in the human heart by demonstrating their presence in CGRP-IR sensory nerve fibers, small cells with an eccentric nucleus resembling ICA cells, and myocardial cells. Taken together, this suggests the role of opioids in both the neural transmission and regulation of myocardial cell function.

  16. The interaction between histamine H1 receptor and μ- opioid receptor in scratching behavior in ICR mice.

    PubMed

    Nakasone, Tasuku; Sugimoto, Yumi; Kamei, Chiaki

    2016-04-15

    In this study, we examined the interaction between histamine H1 receptor and μ-opioid receptor in scratching behavior in ICR mice. Both histamine and morphine caused scratching and simultaneous injection of histamine and morphine had an additive effect. Chlorpheniramine and naloxone inhibited histamine-induced scratching behavior. These two drugs also inhibited morphine-induced scratching behavior. Simultaneous injection of chlorpheniramine and naloxone caused a significant inhibition of histamine-induced scratching compared with separate injections. The same findings were also noted for morphine-induced scratching. These results strongly indicate a close relationship between histamine H1 receptor and μ-opioid receptor in scratching behavior in ICR mice.

  17. Synergy between mu opioid ligands: evidence for functional interactions among mu opioid receptor subtypes.

    PubMed

    Bolan, Elizabeth A; Tallarida, Ronald J; Pasternak, Gavril W

    2002-11-01

    Pharmacological differences among mu opioid drugs have been observed in in vitro and in vivo preclinical models, as well as clinically, implying that all mu opioids may not be working through the same mechanism of action. Here we demonstrate analgesic synergy between L-methadone and several mu opioid ligands. Of the compounds examined, L-methadone selectively synergizes with morphine, morphine-6beta-glucuronide, codeine, and the active metabolite of heroin, 6-acetylmorphine. Morphine synergizes only with L-methadone. In analgesic assays, D-methadone was inactive alone and did not enhance morphine analgesia when the two were given together, confirming that L-methadone was not acting through N-methyl-D-aspartate mechanisms. Both L-methadone and morphine displayed only additive effects when paired with oxymorphone, oxycodone, fentanyl, alfentanyl, or meperidine. Although it displays synergy in analgesic assays, the L-methadone/morphine combination does not exhibit synergy in the gastrointestinal transit assay. This analgesic synergy of L-methadone with selective mu opioid drugs and the differences in opioid-mediated actions suggest that these drugs may be acting via different mechanisms. These findings provide further evidence for the complexity of the pharmacology of mu opioids.

  18. Prospects for Creation of Cardioprotective and Antiarrhythmic Drugs Based on Opioid Receptor Agonists

    PubMed Central

    Maslov, Leonid N; Oeltgen, Peter R.; Naryzhnaya, Natalia V.; Pei, Jian‐Ming; Brown, Stephen A.; Lishmanov, Yury B.; Downey, James M.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract It has now been demonstrated that the μ, δ1, δ2, and κ1 opioid receptor (OR) agonists represent the most promising group of opioids for the creation of drugs enhancing cardiac tolerance to the detrimental effects of ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). Opioids are able to prevent necrosis and apoptosis of cardiomyocytes during I/R and improve cardiac contractility in the reperfusion period. The OR agonists exert an infarct‐reducing effect with prophylactic administration and prevent reperfusion‐induced cardiomyocyte death when ischemic injury of heart has already occurred; that is, opioids can mimic preconditioning and postconditioning phenomena. Furthermore, opioids are also effective in preventing ischemia‐induced arrhythmias. PMID:27197922

  19. Kappa opioid receptors stimulate phosphoinositide turnover in rat brain

    SciTech Connect

    Periyasamy, S.; Hoss, W. )

    1990-01-01

    The effects of various subtype-selective opioid agonists and antagonists on the phosphoinositide (PI) turnover response were investigated in the rat brain. The {kappa}-agonists U-50,488H and ketocyclazocine produced a concentration-dependent increase in the accumulation of IP's in hippocampal slices. The other {kappa}-agonists Dynorphin-A (1-13) amide, and its protected analog D(Ala){sup 2}-dynorphin-A (1-13) amide also produced a significant increase in the formation of ({sup 3}H)-IP's, whereas the {mu}-selective agonists (D-Ala{sup 2}-N-Me-Phe{sup 4}-Gly{sup 5}-ol)-enkephalin and morphine and the {delta}-selective agonist (D-Pen{sup 2,5})-enkephalin were ineffective. The increase in IP's formation elicited by U-50,488H was partially antagonized by naloxone and more completely antagonized by the {kappa}-selective antagonists nor-binaltorphimine and MR 2266. The formation of IP's induced by U-50,488H varies with the regions of the brain used, being highest in hippocampus and amygdala, and lowest in striatum and pons-medullar. The results indicate that brain {kappa}- but neither {mu}- nor {delta}- receptors are coupled to the PI turnover response.

  20. Prefrontal Cortical Kappa Opioid Receptors Attenuate Responses to Amygdala Inputs.

    PubMed

    Tejeda, Hugo A; Hanks, Ashley N; Scott, Liam; Mejias-Aponte, Carlos; Hughes, Zoë A; O'Donnell, Patricio

    2015-12-01

    Kappa opioid receptors (KORs) have been implicated in anxiety and stress, conditions that involve activation of projections from the basolateral amygdala (BLA) to the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Although KORs have been studied in several brain regions, their role on mPFC physiology and on BLA projections to the mPFC remains unclear. Here, we explored whether KORs modify synaptic inputs from the BLA to the mPFC using in vivo electrophysiological recordings with electrical and optogenetic stimulation. Systemic administration of the KOR agonist U69,593 inhibited BLA-evoked synaptic responses in the mPFC without altering hippocampus-evoked responses. Intra-mPFC U69,593 inhibited electrical and optogenetic BLA-evoked synaptic responses, an effect blocked by the KOR antagonist nor-BNI. Bilateral intra-mPFC injection of the KOR antagonist nor-BNI increased center time in the open field test, suggesting an anxiolytic effect. The data demonstrate that mPFC KORs negatively regulate glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the BLA-mPFC pathway and anxiety-like behavior. These findings provide a framework whereby KOR signaling during stress and anxiety can regulate the flow of emotional state information from the BLA to the mPFC.

  1. Naloxegol: the first orally administered, peripherally acting, mu opioid receptor antagonist, approved for the treatment of opioid-induced constipation.

    PubMed

    Corsetti, M; Tack, J

    2015-08-01

    Treatment of opioid-induced constipation (OIC) is becoming a relevant clinical challenge as most of the treatments demonstrated to be more effective than placebo in treating OIC have safety issues limiting a broad clinical application. Naloxegol is the first orally administered, peripherally acting, µ opioid receptor antagonist approved by the FDA and EMA specifically for the treatment of noncancer patients with OIC. This review summarizes the results of the studies regarding the effects of naloxegol in OIC. Pharmacodynamic studies have demonstrated that naloxegol was able to inhibit gastrointestinal opioid effects while preserving central analgesic actions. Phase II and phase III studies in patients with noncancer OIC have confirmed the efficacy of naloxegol to inhibit OIC, and the most consistent efficacy was seen with the 25-mg dose once daily. Side effects were mainly gastrointestinal in origin (and usually transient and mild) and there were no signs of opioid withdrawal in the studies. Safety and tolerability were shown in a long-term safety study. Considering its efficacy, safety, route of administration and the limitations of most of the other available treatments, naloxegol has the potential to become the first-line treatment for noncancer patients with OIC.

  2. Cellular signalling of non-synonymous single-nucleotide polymorphisms of the human μ-opioid receptor (OPRM1)

    PubMed Central

    Knapman, Alisa; Connor, Mark

    2015-01-01

    There is significant variability in individual responses to opioid drugs, which is likely to have a significant genetic component. A number of non-synonymous single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the coding regions of the μ-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1) have been postulated to contribute to this variability. Although many studies have investigated the clinical influences of these μ-opioid receptor variants, the outcomes are reported in the context of thousands of other genes and environmental factors, and we are no closer to being able to predict individual response to opioids based on genotype. Investigation of how μ-opioid receptor SNPs affect their expression, coupling to second messengers, desensitization and regulation is necessary to understand how subtle changes in receptor structure can impact individual responses to opioids. To date, the few functional studies that have investigated the consequences of SNPs on the signalling profile of the μ-opioid receptor in vitro have shown that the common N40D variant has altered functional responses to some opioids, while other, rarer, variants display altered signalling or agonist-dependent regulation. Here, we review the data available on the effects of μ-opioid receptor polymorphisms on receptor function, expression and regulation in vitro, and discuss the limitations of the studies to date. Whether or not μ-opioid receptor SNPs contribute to individual variability in opioid responses remains an open question, in large part because we have relatively little good data about how the amino acid changes affect μ-opioid receptor function. LINKED ARTICLES This article is part of a themed section on Opioids: New Pathways to Functional Selectivity. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2015.172.issue-2 PMID:24527749

  3. N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors and large conductance calcium-sensitive potassium channels inhibit the release of opioid peptides that induce mu-opioid receptor internalization in the rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Song, B; Marvizón, J C G

    2005-01-01

    Endogenous opioids in the spinal cord play an important role in nociception, but the mechanisms that control their release are poorly understood. To simultaneously detect all opioids able to activate the mu-opioid receptor, we measured mu-opioid receptor internalization in rat spinal cord slices stimulated electrically or chemically to evoke opioid release. Electrical stimulation of the dorsal horn in the presence of peptidase inhibitors produced mu-opioid receptor internalization in half of the mu-opioid receptor neurons. This internalization was rapidly abolished by N-methyl-D-aspartate (IC50=2 microM), and N-methyl-D-aspartate antagonists prevented this effect. mu-Opioid receptor internalization evoked by high K+ or veratridine was also inhibited by N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor activation. N-methyl-D-aspartate did not affect mu-opioid receptor internalization induced by exogenous endomorphins, confirming that the effect of N-methyl-D-aspartate was on opioid release. We hypothesized that this inhibition was mediated by large conductance Ca2+-sensitive K+ channels BK(Ca2+). Indeed, inhibition by N-methyl-D-aspartate was prevented by tetraethylammonium and by the selective BK(Ca2+) blockers paxilline, penitrem A and verruculogen. Paxilline did not increase mu-opioid receptor internalization in the absence of N-methyl-D-aspartate, indicating that it does not produce an increase in opioid release unrelated to the inhibition by N-methyl-d-aspartate. The BK(Ca2+) involved appears to be a subtype with slow association kinetics for iberiotoxin, which was effective only with long incubations. The BK(Ca2+) opener NS-1619 also inhibited the evoked mu-opioid receptor internalization, and iberiotoxin prevented this effect. We concluded that Ca2+ influx through N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors causes the opening of BK(Ca2+) and hyperpolarization in opioid-containing dorsal horn neurons, resulting in the inhibition of opioid release. Since mu-opioid receptors in the dorsal horn

  4. N-METHYL-d-ASPARTATE RECEPTORS AND LARGE CONDUCTANCE CALCIUM-SENSITIVE POTASSIUM CHANNELS INHIBIT THE RELEASE OF OPIOID PEPTIDES THAT INDUCE μ-OPIOID RECEPTOR INTERNALIZATION IN THE RAT SPINAL CORD

    PubMed Central

    SONG, B.; MARVIZÓN, J. C. G.

    2006-01-01

    Endogenous opioids in the spinal cord play an important role in nociception, but the mechanisms that control their release are poorly understood. To simultaneously detect all opioids able to activate the μ-opioid receptor, we measured μ-opioid receptor internalization in rat spinal cord slices stimulated electrically or chemically to evoke opioid release. Electrical stimulation of the dorsal horn in the presence of peptidase inhibitors produced μ-opioid receptor internalization in half of the μ-opioid receptor neurons. This internalization was rapidly abolished by N-methyl-d-aspartate (IC50=2 μM), and N-methyl-d-aspartate antagonists prevented this effect. μ-Opioid receptor internalization evoked by high K+ or veratridine was also inhibited by N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor activation. N-methyl-d-aspartate did not affect μ-opioid receptor internalization induced by exogenous endomorphins, confirming that the effect of N-methyl-d-aspartate was on opioid release. We hypothesized that this inhibition was mediated by large conductance Ca2+-sensitive K+ channels BK(Ca2+). Indeed, inhibition by N-methyl-d-aspartate was prevented by tetraethylammonium and by the selective BK(Ca2+) blockers paxilline, penitrem A and verruculogen. Paxilline did not increase μ-opioid receptor internalization in the absence of N-methyl-d-aspartate, indicating that it does not produce an increase in opioid release unrelated to the inhibition by N-methyl-d-aspartate. The BK(Ca2+) involved appears to be a subtype with slow association kinetics for iberiotoxin, which was effective only with long incubations. The BK(Ca2+) opener NS-1619 also inhibited the evoked μ-opioid receptor internalization, and iberiotoxin prevented this effect. We concluded that Ca2+ influx through N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors causes the opening of BK(Ca2+) and hyperpolarization in opioid-containing dorsal horn neurons, resulting in the inhibition of opioid release. Since μ-opioid receptors in the dorsal horn

  5. The role of δ-opioid receptors in learning and memory underlying the development of addiction.

    PubMed

    Klenowski, Paul; Morgan, Michael; Bartlett, Selena E

    2015-01-01

    Opioids are important endogenous ligands that exist in both invertebrates and vertebrates and signal b