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Modulation of mesolimbic dopamine neurons activity by GABAB receptors in rats


, : Modulation of mesolimbic dopamine neurons activity by GABAB receptors in rats. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts 27(2): 1856

In the present electrophysiological study we have investigated the effect of the GABAB agonist baclofen on the spontaneous activity of selectively identified mesoaccumbens (MAcc) dopamine (DA) neurons. Single cell extracellular recordings coupled with antidromic activation from terminal fields (nucleus accumbens, NAcc) were applied to ventral tegmental area (VTA) DA neurons recorded from urethane anaesthetized rats. As previously described for substantia nigra DA neurons, the systemic administration of baclofen (0.25-16 mg/kg, i.v.) produced a dose-dependent decrease in firing rate and burst firing activity of VTA DA neurons projecting to the NAcc. The inhibitory response induced by baclofen was abruptly reversed by the intravenous administration of the GABAB antagonist SCH50911 (16-32 mg/kg). On the other hand, although SCH50911 was constantly effective in antagonizing the actions of baclofen, it was able per se (0.5-64 mg/kg, i.v.) to induce from a slight excitation (maximum effect 141.6+-4.1% of baseline, at 64 mg/kg) to a mild inhibition (maximum effect 65+-5.3% of baseline, at 64 mg/kg) of MAcc DA neurons. Further studies are currently in progress to test the effect of other selective GABAB antagonists. Our results indicate that mesolimbic, as well as nigrostriatal, dopaminergic neuronal activity is modulated by GABAB receptors and support the physiological role of GABAergic afferents in regulating midbrain DA neurons functions.

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