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Ling Hu, Xiang-Hong Jing, Cai-Lian Cui, Guo-Gang Xing and Bing Zhu NMDA receptors in the midbrain play a critical role in dopamine-mediated hippocampal synaptic potentiation caused by morphine Addiction Biology 19

Article first published online: 19 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/adb.12010

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A single exposure to drugs of abuse produces an NMDAR-dependent synaptic potentiation at excitatory synapses of VTA dopamine neurons. Hippocampal DA release modulates hippocampal plasticity and drug-associated memories. We find that intra-VTA but not intra-hippocampus injection of morphine evoked hippocampal synaptic potentiation. Local hippocampal dopamine D1 receptors are required in the morphine-induced synaptic potentiation and CPP. Moreover, both NMDAR activation in the VTA and VTA/hippocampus dopaminergic connections are essential for the morphine-evoked potentiation and CPP.

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