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Brain Res. 1984 Jun 25;304(2):285-90.

Characterization and down-regulation of opiate receptors in aggregating fetal rat brain cells.


Aggregating brain cells prepared from embryonic rats bind radioactive opiates in a stereospecific manner. The drug selectivity, receptor content during culturing and down-regulation of these apparent opiate receptors were studied in aggregates prepared from the embryonic hindbrain or forebrain. The receptor content in hindbrain but not forebrain aggregates was increased up to 3-fold after 21 days in culture. Differences between the receptors of the two types of aggregates were also observed in the affinity of opiate alkaloids and D-Ala2,D-Leu5-enkephalin (DADL). The potent opiate alkaloid etorphine induced down-regulation of opiate receptors in aggregates prepared from either brain region whereas DADL was a potent down-regulator in the forebrain but not in the hindbrain aggregates and morphine had no effect in both tissues. The implications of these results concerning the control of various types of opiate receptors in the whole animal are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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