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Life Sci. 1986 Apr 7;38(14):1317-21.

Organophosphorus anticholinesterases do not mediate analgesia through inhibition of enkephalin degradation.


The effect on enkephalin degradation of the four highly potent organophosphorus anticholinesterases, soman, sarin, tabun and DFP was studied in synaptosomal fractions of rat brain striata. None of the agents effected any of the enkephalin degrading enzymes, the puromycin sensitive aminopeptidase, the p-hydroxymercurybenzoate (p-HMB) sensitive dipeptidyl aminopeptidase or the phosphoramidon sensitive enkephalinase. Furthermore, no peptidase function of acetylcholinesterase was found, when Leu-enkephalin was used as substrate at low concentrations (27 nM). Supporting the in vitro data, no difference was obtained in the striatal levels of Met- and Leu-enkephalin between rats receiving a high single dose of soman and controls. The results show that the analgesic effect of anticholinesterases are more likely due to mechanisms other than inhibition of enkephalin degradation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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