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Psychopharmacology (Berl). 1979 Apr 11;62(2):169-73.

A pharmacologic study of analgesia produced by stimulation of the nucleus locus coeruleus.


Pharmacologic studies of analgesia produced by stimulation of the nucleus locus coeruleus (LC) were conducted using the rat hot-plate test. A correlation between self-stimulation and analgesia produced by stimulation of LC was found. Analgesia produced by LC stimulation was attenuated by naloxone, a morphine antagonist, cyproheptidine, a serotonin antagonist, and WB-4101, an alpha-adrenergic antagonist. The analgesia was absent in 6-OHDA-treated rats. Catecholamine synthesis inhibition by a combination of reserpine and AMT or more specific inhibition of noradrenaline synthesis by DDC elevated latency to paw lick and yet did not affect stimulation-produced analgesia. It is suggested that morphinergic, serotonergic, and alpha-adrenergic mechanisms mediate LC stimulation produced analgesia.

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