Effect of memantine and CNQX in the acquisition, expression and reinstatement of cocaine-induced conditioned place preference

Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2007 May 9;31(4):932-9. doi: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2007.02.012. Epub 2007 Feb 28.


The present study evaluates the effect of memantine, a non-competitive N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor antagonist and CNQX, an alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA)/kainate receptor antagonist on the rewarding effects of cocaine in mice, using the conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Cocaine-induced CPP was studied pairing this drug with different memantine or CNQX doses during either the acquisition or the expression phase of the procedure. Once CPP was established, and the preference extinguished, reinstatement was induced by a priming dose of cocaine. Both antagonists, which in themselves do not present motivational actions on the preference shown by the animals, abolished the acquisition and expression of the cocaine-induced CPP. Neither of the antagonists precipitated reinstatement of the preference induced by cocaine but memantine blocked the cocaine-primed reinstatement. Our results suggest that cocaine-induced CPP and reinstatement is largely dependent on glutamate neurotransmission, and confer a putative role for memantine among the tools useful for cocaine management and treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 6-Cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Cocaine / pharmacology*
  • Conditioning, Operant / drug effects*
  • Dopamine Uptake Inhibitors / pharmacology*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Interactions
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Extinction, Psychological / drug effects
  • Male
  • Memantine / pharmacology*
  • Mice
  • Reinforcement, Psychology*


  • Dopamine Uptake Inhibitors
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists
  • 6-Cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione
  • Cocaine
  • Memantine