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Acta Neurobiol Exp (Wars). 2008;68(1):10-25.

Modulation of Ca2+ channel current by mu opioid receptors in prefrontal cortex pyramidal neurons in rats.

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  • 1Department of Physiology and Department of Experimental and Clinical Physiology, The Medical University of Warsaw, Krakowskie PrzedmieĊ›cie 26/28, 00-325 Warsaw, Poland.


Our work assesses the effects of mu opioid receptor activation on high-threshold Ca2+/Ba2+ currents in freshly dispersed pyramidal neurons of the medial prefrontal cortex in rats. Application of the specific mu receptor agonist (D-Ala2+, N-Me-Phe4+, Gly5+-ol)-enkephalin (DAMGO) at 1 microM decreased Ca2+ current amplitudes from 0.72 to 0.49 nA. The effect was abolished by naloxone and omega-Conotoxin GVIA. Inhibition was not abolished by strong depolarisation of the cell membrane. In addition, a macroscopic Ba2+ current recorded in cell-attached configuration was inhibited when DAMGO was applied outside the patch pipette. An adenylyl cyclase inhibitor (SQ 22536) and a protein kinase A inhibitor (H-89) decreased Ca2+ current amplitude. Moreover, the inhibitory effect of mu opioid receptors on Ca2+ currents required the activation of protein kinase A. We conclude that activation of mu opioid receptors in medial prefrontal cortex pyramidal neurons inhibits N type Ca2+ channel currents, and that protein kinase A is involved in this transduction pathway.

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