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Chronic immobilization stress primes the hippocampal opioid system for oxycodone-associated learning in female but not male rats.

TitleChronic immobilization stress primes the hippocampal opioid system for oxycodone-associated learning in female but not male rats.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsReich B, Zhou Y, Goldstein E, Srivats SS, Contoreggi NH, Kogan JF, McEwen BS, Kreek MJeanne, Milner TA, Gray JD
Date Published2019 Jan 10

In adult female, but not male, Sprague Dawley rats, chronic immobilization stress (CIS) increases mossy fiber (MF) Leu-Enkephalin levels and redistributes delta- and mu-opioid receptors (DORs and MORs) in hippocampal CA3 pyramidal cells and GABAergic interneurons to promote excitation and learning processes following subsequent opioid exposure. Here, we demonstrate that CIS females, but not males, acquire conditioned place preference (CPP) to oxycodone and that CIS "primes" the hippocampal opioid system in females for oxycodone-associated learning. In CA3b, oxycodone-injected (Oxy) CIS females relative to saline-injected (Sal) CIS females exhibited an increase in the cytoplasmic and total densities of DORs in pyramidal cell dendrites so that they were similar to Sal- and Oxy-CIS males. Consistent with our earlier studies, Sal- and Oxy-CIS females but not CIS males had elevated DOR densities in MF-CA3 dendritic spines, which we have previously shown are important for opioid-mediated long-term potentiation. In the dentate gyrus, Oxy-CIS females had more DOR-labeled interneurons than Sal-CIS females. Moreover, Sal- and Oxy-CIS females compared to both groups of CIS males had elevated levels of DORs and MORs in GABAergic interneuron dendrites, suggesting capacity for greater synthesis or storage of these receptors in circuits important for opioid-mediated disinhibition. However, more plasmalemmal MORs were on large parvalbumin-containing dendrites of Oxy-CIS males compared to Sal-CIS males, suggesting a limited ability for increased granule cell disinhibition. These results suggest that low levels of DORs in MF-CA3 synapses and hilar GABAergic interneurons may contribute to the attenuation of oxycodone CPP in males exposed to CIS.

Alternate JournalSynapse
PubMed ID30632204
Grant List / / Hope for Depression Research Foundation /
HL 136520 / / National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute /
HL098351 / / National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute /
MH041256 / / National Institute of Mental Health /
MH102065 / / National Institute of Mental Health /
DA08259 / / National Institute on Drug Abuse /