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Nicotine increases alcohol self-administration in male rats via a mu-opioid mechanism within the mesolimbic pathway
Linköping University, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, Center for Social and Affective Neuroscience. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5726-4814
Linköping University, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, Center for Social and Affective Neuroscience. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Sichuan Prov Peoples Hosp, Peoples R China.
Heidelberg Univ, Germany.
Linköping University, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, Center for Social and Affective Neuroscience. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.
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2020 (English)In: British Journal of Pharmacology, ISSN 0007-1188, E-ISSN 1476-5381, Vol. 177, no 19, p. 4516-4531Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background and Purpose: Alcohol and nicotine use disorders are commonly comorbid. Both alcohol and nicotine can activate opioid systems in reward-related brain regions, leading to adaptive changes in opioid signalling upon chronic exposure. The potential role of these adaptations for comorbidity is presently unknown. Here, we examined the contribution of mu and kappa-opioid receptors to nicotine-induced escalation of alcohol self-administration in rats. Experimental Approach: Chronic nicotine was tested on alcohol self-administration and motivation to obtain alcohol. We then tested the effect of the kappa antagonist CERC-501 and the preferential mu receptor antagonist naltrexone on basal and nicotine-escalated alcohol self-administration. To probe mu or kappa receptor adaptations, receptor binding and G-protein coupling assays were performed in reward-related brain regions. Finally, dopaminergic activity in response to alcohol was examined, using phosphorylation of DARPP-32 in nucleus accumbens as a biomarker. Key Results: Nicotine robustly induced escalation of alcohol self-administration and motivation to obtain alcohol. This was blocked by naltrexone but not by CERC-501. Escalation of alcohol self-administration was associated with decreased DAMGO-stimulated mu receptor signalling in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and decreased pDARPP-32 in the nucleus accumbens shell in response to alcohol. Conclusions and Implications: Collectively, these results suggest that nicotine contributes to escalate alcohol self-administration through a dysregulation of mu receptor activity in the VTA. These data imply that targeting mu rather than kappa receptors may be the preferred pharmacotherapeutic approach for the treatment of alcohol use disorder when nicotine use contributes to alcohol consumption.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
WILEY , 2020. Vol. 177, no 19, p. 4516-4531
Keywords [en]
alcohol; comorbidity; nicotine; kappa receptors; mu
National Category
Pharmacology and Toxicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-168757DOI: 10.1111/bph.15210ISI: 000559497900001PubMedID: 32697329OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-168757DiVA, id: diva2:1463465
Note

Funding Agencies|Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), German Research FoundationGerman Research Foundation (DFG) [402170461 - TRR 265]; Bundesministerium fur Bildung und Forschung (BMBF) SysMedSUDs - FKZFederal Ministry of Education & Research (BMBF) [01ZX1909]; Swedish Research CouncilSwedish Research Council [2013-07434]

Available from: 2020-09-02 Created: 2020-09-02 Last updated: 2021-12-29

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Heilig, Markus

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Domi, EsiXu, LiNordeman, AntonAugier, GaëlleHolm, LovisaToivainen, SanneAugier, EricHeilig, Markus
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Center for Social and Affective NeuroscienceFaculty of Medicine and Health SciencesPsykiatriska kliniken i Linköping
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