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Psychopharmacology (Berl). 1998 Jan;135(1):99-106.

Antinociceptive effects of monoamine reuptake inhibitors administered alone or in combination with mu opioid agonists in rhesus monkeys.

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Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Center, McLean Hospital-Harvard Medical School, Belmont, MA 02178, USA.


Cocaine, which non-selectively blocks the reuptake of the monoamines serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, produces weak antinociceptive effects and increases the antinociceptive effects of low- to intermediate-efficacy mu opioid agonists in rhesus monkeys. In the present study, the antinociceptive effects of more selective monoamine reuptake inhibitors administered alone and in combination with mu opioid agonists were evaluated in rhesus monkeys using a warm-water tail-withdrawal assay of thermal nociception. Like cocaine, the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors clomipramine (0.01-3.2 mg/kg) and fluoxetine (0.1-10 mg/kg) produced weak antinociceptive effects. Pretreatment with the serotonin receptor antagonist mianserin (0.032-0.32 mg/kg) produced rightward and downward shifts in the clomipramine dose-effect curve, suggesting that the effects of clomipramine were mediated by serotonin receptors. Combination of clomipramine with the low efficacy mu agonist nalbuphine or the intermediate efficacy mu agonist morphine produced more antinociception than did the mu agonists alone. Fluoxetine also produced a small leftward shift in the morphine dose-effect curve. The selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors nisoxetine (0.1-10 mg/kg) and tomoxetine (0.1-10 mg/kg) and the selective dopamine reuptake inhibitors bupropion (0.032-3.2 mg/kg) and GBR 12909 (0.1-10 mg/kg) did not produce antinociception or increase antinociception induced by nalbuphine or morphine. In fact, GBR 12909 produced dose-dependent allodynia and reduced the maximal antinociceptive effects of morphine. These results suggest that inhibition of serotonin reuptake is sufficient to produce weak antinociceptive effects and enhance the antinociceptive effects of low efficacy mu opioid agonists. These results also suggest that the effects of cocaine on serotonin reuptake may contribute to cocaine's antinociceptive effects in rhesus monkeys.

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