Send to

Choose Destination
Behav Brain Res. 2013 Jun 15;247:17-26. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2013.02.034. Epub 2013 Mar 5.

Role of oxidative stress and inducible nitric oxide synthase in morphine-induced tolerance and dependence in mice. Effect of alpha-lipoic acid.

Author information

Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Assiut University, Assiut, Egypt.


In this study, the possible role of oxidative stress and nitric oxide (NO) synthase isoforms in the development of morphine tolerance and dependence, and effect of alpha-lipoic acid on these parameters were investigated in mice. The development of morphine tolerance as measured by the hot plate test and dependence, as assessed by naloxone-precipitated withdrawal manifestations, produced an increase in brain glutamate and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels and NO production as well as a decrease in brain intracellular reduced glutathione (GSH) level and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) activity. Also, the development of these syndromes increased inducible but not neuronal NO synthase mRNA and protein expressions in mice brain. Co-administration of alpha-lipoic acid (α-LA) inhibited the development of morphine tolerance and dependence, their associated biochemical alterations, except elevation of brain glutamate level, and their associated increase in brain inducible NO synthase mRNA and protein expressions. The inhibitory effect of α-LA on morphine-induced tolerance and dependence and on naloxone-induced biochemical alterations in morphine-dependent mice was enhanced by concurrent administration of the NMDA receptor antagonist, dizocilpine, the antioxidant, N-acetylcysteine or the selective inducible NO synthase inhibitor, aminoguanidine. On the other hand, this inhibitory effect of α-LA was not changed by concurrent administration of the selective neuronal NO synthase inhibitor, 7-nitroindazole but antagonized by concurrent administration of the NO precursor, L-arginine. These results suggest that α-LA through inhibition of morphine-induced oxidative stress and increase in the expression and activity of inducible NO synthase in the brain can attenuate the development of morphine tolerance and dependence.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center