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Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 1994 Jun;48(2):327-35.

Characterization of dopamine transporter and locomotor effects of cocaine, GBR 12909, epidepride, and SCH 23390 in C57BL and DBA mice.

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School of Pharmacy, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver 80262.


C57BL/6 and DBA/2 mice were used to examine genetic differences in locomotor activating effects of acute cocaine administration and to determine whether differences were mediated by dopaminergic systems. C57BL/6 mice were less activated than DBA/2 mice at 5 and 10 min after 10 and 15 mg/kg cocaine. HPLC analysis showed equivalent brain cocaine concentrations in the two strains at 5 and 10 min after 10, 15, or 20 mg/kg doses. The selective dopamine uptake inhibitor, GBR 12909, at 5 and 7.5 mg/kg, produced greater locomotor activation in DBA/2 mice than in C57BL/6 mice. However, binding studies with the selective dopamine uptake ligand [3H]GBR 12935, revealed no between-strain difference in Kd or Bmax in caudate putamen (CP) or nucleus accumbens (NA) membranes. Competition assays using unlabeled dopamine to compete for [3H]GBR 12935 binding in CP or NA membranes showed no between-strain difference by brain region. The specific D1 or D2 antagonists, SCH 23390 or epidepride, respectively, produced dose-dependent decreases in locomotor activity but there were no between-strain differences. However, epidepride, at a dose of 0.003 mg/kg, completely reversed cocaine-induced (15 mg/kg) activation in both strains. These findings show that C57BL/6 and DBA/2 mice differ in dopamine-related behaviors and suggest that dopaminergic processes may mediate genetic differences in cocaine sensitivity.

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