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Brain Res. 2000 Sep 22;877(2):354-60.

SH-SY5Y cells as a model for sigma receptor regulation of potassium-stimulated dopamine release.

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  • 1Neuroscience Program, The George Washington University Medical Center, 2300 I St. NW, Washington, DC 20037, USA.


Previous studies in our laboratory using rat brain tissue have shown that neuropeptide Y (NPY) can enhance NMDA- and potassium-stimulated dopamine release from various brain regions and that this enhancement is reversed by sigma (sigma) receptor antagonists. In the current study, we sought to determine whether SH-SY5Y cells are suitable for investigating sigma receptor effects and whether any sigma receptors present are of the subtype responsive to NPY. We compare mechanisms by which the prototypical sigma receptor agonist (+)-pentazocine, and the proposed endogenous sigma receptor ligand NPY regulate potassium-stimulated [(3)H]dopamine release from SH-SY5Y cells. Both (+)-pentazocine and NPY inhibit potassium-stimulated [(3)H]dopamine release. Unlike our studies in rat brain tissue, the effect of NPY on [(3)H]dopamine release is not reversed by sigma receptor antagonists. SH-SY5Y cells appear to be an appropriate model to study the regulation of dopamine release by sigma receptors or by NPY receptors, but this population is not identical to that population identified in brain slices.

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