Send to

Choose Destination
Neuropsychopharmacology. 2012 Apr;37(5):1083-91. doi: 10.1038/npp.2011.200. Epub 2011 Sep 14.

Novel cocaine vaccine linked to a disrupted adenovirus gene transfer vector blocks cocaine psychostimulant and reinforcing effects.

Author information

Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.


Immunotherapy is a promising treatment for drug addiction. However, insufficient immune responses to vaccines in most subjects pose a challenge. In this study, we tested the efficacy of a new cocaine vaccine (dAd5GNE) in antagonizing cocaine addiction-related behaviors in rats. This vaccine used a disrupted serotype 5 adenovirus (Ad) gene transfer vector coupled to a third-generation cocaine hapten, termed GNE (6-(2R,3S)-3-(benzoyloxy)-8-methyl-8-azabicyclo [3.2.1] octane-2-carboxamido-hexanoic acid). Three groups of rats were immunized with dAd5GNE. One group was injected with (3)H-cocaine, and radioactivity in the blood and brain was determined. A second group was tested for cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization. A third group was examined for cocaine self-administration, extinction, and reinstatement of responding for cocaine. Antibody titers were determined at various time-points. In each experiment, we added a control group that was immunized with dAd5 without a hapten. The vaccination with dAd5GNE produced long-lasting high titers (>10(5)) of anti-cocaine antibodies in all of the rats. The vaccination inhibited cocaine-induced hyperlocomotor activity and sensitization. Vaccinated rats acquired cocaine self-administration, but they showed less motivation to self-administer cocaine under a progressive-ratio schedule than control rats. When cocaine was not available in a session, control rats exhibited 'extinction burst' responding, whereas vaccinated rats did not. Moreover, when primed with cocaine, vaccinated rats did not reinstate responding, suggesting a blockade of cocaine-seeking behavior. These data strongly suggest that our dAd5GNE vector-based vaccine may be effective in treating cocaine abuse and addiction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center