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Brain Res. 1991 Jan 18;539(1):94-102.

Effect of dose on cocaine self-administration behavior and dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens.

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1
Emory University, Department of Chemistry, Atlanta, GA 30322.

Abstract

The reinforcing properties of cocaine are thought to be primarily mediated by the release of dopamine (DA) in the nucleus accumbens (N ACC). The extracellular concentration of DA in the N ACC was monitored with in vivo microdialysis procedures during ongoing cocaine self-administration to achieve a more detailed understanding of how DA mediates the reinforcing effects of cocaine. A dose-dependent decrease in lever pressing behavior occurred as the dose of cocaine was increased. The mean number of lever presses (in 20 min intervals) for 0.25, 0.50 and 0.75 mg/infusion doses was 5.6 +/- 0.7, 3.3 +/- 0.3 and 2.4 +/- 0.3, respectively. However, a simple inverse relationship did not occur between lever pressing behavior and the total amount of cocaine injected. Lever pressing behavior significantly increased cocaine intake as the dose of cocaine was increased. The total amount of cocaine intake that occurred during the 3 h self-administration period of the 0.25, 0.50 and 0.75 mg/infusion doses was 12.0 +/- 1.8 mg, 14.6 +/- 0.37 mg and 16.6 +/- 1.2 mg. Correspondingly, the extracellular concentration of DA in the N ACC was increased and maintained at significantly higher levels as the dose of cocaine was increased. The average concentration of DA that occurred during the self-administration of 0.25, 0.50 and 0.75 mg/infusion doses of cocaine was 269 +/- 26%, 381 +/- 21% and 464 +/- 49% of the basal DA concentration. As dose is increased, a corresponding increase occurs in both cocaine intake and in the extracellular concentration of DA in the N ACC.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

PMID:
2015506
DOI:
10.1016/0006-8993(91)90690-w
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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