μ- and δ-opioid receptor agonists inhibit DARPP-32 phosphorylation in distinct populations of striatal projection neurons

Authors


: Dr Gilberto Fisone, Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, Doktorsringen 12, S-171 77 Stockholm, Sweden.
E-mail: gilberto.fisone@neuro.ki.se

Abstract

In the striatum, DARPP-32 (dopamine- and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein of 32 kDa) is highly expressed by virtually all projection medium-sized spiny neurons. cAMP-dependent phosphorylation of DARPP-32 is stimulated via activation of dopamine D1 receptors in striatonigral neurons, and via activation of adenosine A2A receptors in striatopallidal neurons. In this study, we have examined the contribution of μ-, δ- and κ-opioid receptors to the regulation of DARPP-32 phosphorylation, in rat striatal slices. The results show that, at low concentrations (100 pm–1 nm), the μ-opioid agonist, Tyr-D-Ala-Gly-N-Me-Phe-glycinol (DAMGO), inhibits the increase in DARPP-32 phosphorylation induced by activation of D1, but not by activation of A2A receptors. Conversely, the δ-receptor agonist, Tyr-D-Pen-Gly-Phe-D-Pen (DPDPE), inhibits DARPP-32 phosphorylation induced by activation of A2A, but not by activation of D1 receptors. The κ-receptor agonist, U50488, does not affect DARPP-32 phosphorylation induced by either D1 or A2A agonists. Thus, μ-opioid receptors interact with dopamine D1 receptors on striatonigral neurons, whereas δ-opioid receptors interact with adenosine A2A receptors on striatopallidal neurons. These results suggest that regulation of DARPP-32 phosphorylation is involved in mediating some of the effects exerted by enkephalin on striatal medium-sized spiny neurons.

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