Striatal opiate mu-receptors are not located on dopamine nerve endings in the rat

Neuroscience. 1990;39(2):313-21. doi: 10.1016/0306-4522(90)90270-e.


In rat striatal slices, the autoradiographic analysis of [3H]naloxone binding allows one to define highly labelled patches corresponding to the striosomes and representing about 17% of the total striatal volume, surrounded by a poorly labelled zone, the matrix. Previous studies have shown that the density of these mu-opiate receptor binding sites is decreased by about 28% following destruction of the striatal dopamine innervation suggesting a partial localization of these receptors on dopamine presynaptic nerve endings. These results were confirmed but, in addition, we have shown that a chronic (30 days) blockade of dopamine transmission obtained by treatment of the animals with a long acting neuroleptic induces a similar decrease of mu binding sites. Further experiments made with D-Pen2,D-Pen5-[tyrosyl-3-5(n)-3H] enkephalin, a selective delta opiate receptor agonist, have revealed that the density of delta opiate binding sites is decreased (30%) in rats with striatal dopamine denervation but not in those treated with the long acting neuroleptic. These data indicate that part of these delta receptors is located on dopamine nerve terminals but are not in favour of the presence of mu receptors on these nerve terminals. The decrease in [3H]naloxone binding sites induced by prolonged interruption of dopamine transmission can be attributed to postsynaptic events.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoradiography
  • Corpus Striatum / drug effects
  • Corpus Striatum / metabolism*
  • Dopamine / metabolism*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Naloxone / metabolism
  • Nerve Endings / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Receptors, Opioid / drug effects
  • Receptors, Opioid / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Opioid, mu
  • Reference Values
  • Thiazines / pharmacology
  • Tritium


  • Receptors, Opioid
  • Receptors, Opioid, mu
  • Thiazines
  • Tritium
  • Naloxone
  • Dopamine