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Brain Res. 1987 Dec 15;436(2):223-8.

GABAergic modulation of the analgesic effects of morphine microinjected in the ventral periaqueductal gray matter of the rat.

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1
Department of Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles 90024.

Abstract

The possibility that GABAergic neurons in the ventral periaqueductal gray matter modulate the analgesic effects of morphine microinjected into this brain area was investigated in the rat. Microinjection of 4,5,6,7-tetrahydroisoxazolo[5,4-c]pyridin 3-ol (THIP) (0.4 microgram in 0.2 microliter), a GABA agonist, in the ventral periaqueductal gray matter significantly reversed the increase of tail-flick latency induced by a prior injection of morphine sulfate (4 micrograms in 0.2 microliter) at the same site. Conversely, microinjection in the same region of picrotoxin (10 ng in 0.2 microliter), a GABA antagonist, significantly potentiated the analgesic effect of the same dose of morphine. These results suggest the existence of GABAergic neurons that tonically inhibit periaqueductal gray output neurons involved in centrifugal pain inhibition. The analgesic effects of opiates may, at least in part, result from disinhibition of these GABAergic neurons.

PMID:
3435824
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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