Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Neuroscience. 1999;94(2):505-14.

Prior D1 dopamine receptor stimulation is required to prime D2-mediated striatal Fos expression in 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912, USA.


Repeated dopamine agonist administration to rats with unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine lesions of the nigrostriatal pathway potentiates behavioral and neuronal activation in response to subsequent dopamine agonist treatment. This response sensitization has been termed "priming" or "reverse-tolerance". Our prior work has shown that three pretreatment injections of the mixed D1/D2 agonist apomorphine (0.5 mg/kg) into 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats permits a previously inactive dose of the D2 agonist quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg) to induce robust contralateral rotation and striatal Fos expression in striatoentopeduncular "direct" pathway neurons. These striatal neurons typically express D1 but not D2 receptors. Because apomorphine acts as an agonist at both D1 and D2 receptors, the present study sought to determine whether D1, D2, or concomitant D1/D2 receptor stimulation was required to prime D2-mediated contralateral rotation and striatal Fos expression. Twenty-one days following unilateral stereotaxic injection of 6-hydroxydopamine into the medial forebrain bundle, rats received three pretreatment injections, at three- to six-day intervals, with either: the mixed D1/D2 agonist apomorphine, the D1 agonist SKF38393, the D2 agonist quinpirole, or a combination of SKF38393 + quinpirole. Ten days following the third pretreatment injection, 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats were challenged with the D2 agonist quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg). Pretreatment with SKF38393 (10 mg/kg), quinpirole (1 mg/kg) or SKF38393 (1 mg/kg) + quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg) permitted an otherwise inactive dose of quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg) to induce robust contralateral rotation which was similar in magnitude to that observed following apomorphine priming. However, only pretreatment with SKF38393 (10 mg/kg) or SKF38393 (1 mg/kg) + quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg) permitted the same dose of quinpirole (0.25 mg/kg) to induce striatal Fos expression. These results demonstrate that while prior stimulation of D1, D2 or D1/D2 receptors can effectively prime D2-mediated contralateral rotation, prior stimulation of D1 receptors is required to prime D2-mediated striatal Fos expression. This study demonstrates that priming of 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats with a D1 agonist permits a subsequent challenge with a D2 agonist to produce robust rotational behavior that is accompanied by induction of immediate-early gene expression in neurons that comprise the "direct" striatal output pathway. These responses are equivalent to the changes observed in apomorphine-primed 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats challenged with D2 agonist. In contrast, D2 agonist priming was not associated with D2-mediated induction of striatal immediate-early gene expression even though priming of D2-mediated rotational behavior was not different from that observed following priming with apomorphine or D1 agonist. Therefore, while priming-induced alterations in D2-mediated immediate early gene expression in the "direct" striatal output pathway may contribute to the enhanced motor behavior observed, such changes in striatal gene expression do not appear to be required for this potentiated motor response in dopamine-depleted rats.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk