BACKGROUND: Rats emit 50kHz ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) in response to either natural or pharmacological pleasurable stimuli, and these USVs have emerged as a new behavioral measure for investigating the motivational properties of drugs. Earlier studies have indicated that activation of the dopaminergic system is critically involved in 50kHz USV emissions. However, evidence also exists that non-dopaminergic neurotransmitters participate in this behavioral response. METHODS:To ascertain whether glutamate transmission plays a role in 50kHz USV emissions stimulated by amphetamine, rats received five amphetamine (1-2mg/kg, i.p.) administrations on alternate days in a test cage, either alone or combined with the glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist MK-801 (0.1-0.5mg/kg, i.p.). Seven days after treatment discontinuation, rats were re-exposed to the test cage to assess drug conditioning, and afterwards received a drug challenge. USVs and locomotor activity were evaluated, along with immunofluorescence for Zif-268 in various brain regions and spontaneous alternation in a Y maze. RESULTS:Amphetamine-treated rats displayed higher 50kHz USV emissions and locomotor activity than vehicle-treated rats, and emitted conditioned vocalizations on test cage re-exposure. Rats co-administered amphetamine and MK-801 displayed lower and dose-dependent 50kHz USV emissions, but not lower locomotor activity, during repeated treatment and challenge, and scarce conditioned vocalization compared with amphetamine-treated rats. These effects were associated with lower levels of Zif-268 after amphetamine challenge and spontaneous alternation deficits. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that glutamate transmission participates in the acute, long-term, and conditioned effects of amphetamine on 50kHz USVs, possibly by influencing amphetamine-induced long-term neuronal changes and/or amphetamine-associated memories.

Involvement of Glutamate NMDA Receptors in the Acute, Long-Term, and Conditioned Effects of Amphetamine on Rat 50kHz Ultrasonic Vocalizations

COSTA, GIULIA;MORELLI, MICAELA;SIMOLA, NICOLA
2015

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Rats emit 50kHz ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) in response to either natural or pharmacological pleasurable stimuli, and these USVs have emerged as a new behavioral measure for investigating the motivational properties of drugs. Earlier studies have indicated that activation of the dopaminergic system is critically involved in 50kHz USV emissions. However, evidence also exists that non-dopaminergic neurotransmitters participate in this behavioral response. METHODS:To ascertain whether glutamate transmission plays a role in 50kHz USV emissions stimulated by amphetamine, rats received five amphetamine (1-2mg/kg, i.p.) administrations on alternate days in a test cage, either alone or combined with the glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist MK-801 (0.1-0.5mg/kg, i.p.). Seven days after treatment discontinuation, rats were re-exposed to the test cage to assess drug conditioning, and afterwards received a drug challenge. USVs and locomotor activity were evaluated, along with immunofluorescence for Zif-268 in various brain regions and spontaneous alternation in a Y maze. RESULTS:Amphetamine-treated rats displayed higher 50kHz USV emissions and locomotor activity than vehicle-treated rats, and emitted conditioned vocalizations on test cage re-exposure. Rats co-administered amphetamine and MK-801 displayed lower and dose-dependent 50kHz USV emissions, but not lower locomotor activity, during repeated treatment and challenge, and scarce conditioned vocalization compared with amphetamine-treated rats. These effects were associated with lower levels of Zif-268 after amphetamine challenge and spontaneous alternation deficits. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that glutamate transmission participates in the acute, long-term, and conditioned effects of amphetamine on 50kHz USVs, possibly by influencing amphetamine-induced long-term neuronal changes and/or amphetamine-associated memories.
MK-801; Zif-268; psychostimulant; reward; sensitization; spontaneous alternation
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11584/116034
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