Alterations in septohippocampal cholinergic innervations and related behaviors after early exposure to heroin and phencyclidine

Joseph Yanai*, Yosefa Avraham, Shlomo Levy, Julia Maslaton, Chaim G. Pick, Yael Rogel-Fuchs, Eias A. Zahalka

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Mice were exposed to diacetylmorphine (heroin) or phencyclidine (PCP) prenatally or neonatally. At a later age, they were tested for hippocampus-related behavioral deficits and concomitant alterations in the septohippocampal cholinergic innervations. Actually, this is an application of the previously established phenobarbital neuroteratogenicity model to heroin and PCP. Prenatal exposure was accomplished transplacentally by injecting the mother 10 mg/kg heroin or PCP on gestation days 9-18. Neonatal administrations were applied directly by injections of 10 mg/kg of either drug to the pups between neonatal days 2-21. At the age of 50 days, mice exposed to heroin and PCP prenatally exhibited a 107% and 159% increase in their muscarinic cholinergic receptors Bmax, respectively. Neonatal exposure to heroin or PCP caused an 83% and 76% increase in the receptors respectively. On the behavioral level, both prenatal and neonatal exposure to heroin or PCP reduced performance in the hippocampus related eight-arm maze and Morris mazes. Depending on the drug, the test and the period of drug administration, the reduction ranged between 10% and 75%. The results suggest that heroin and PCP induce alterations in the septohippocampal cholinergic innervations and in related behavioral performance. Further studies are necessary in order to connect the biochemical and behavioral events in causal relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-214
Number of pages8
JournalDevelopmental Brain Research
Volume69
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 23 Oct 1992
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Diacetylmorphine
  • Eight-arm maze
  • Hippocampus
  • Morris maze
  • Mouse
  • Muscarinic receptor
  • Neonatal exposure
  • Phencyclidine
  • Prenatal exposure

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