Psychopharmacology

, Volume 184, Issue 3, pp 409–416

Effects of a nicotine conjugate vaccine on the acquisition and maintenance of nicotine self-administration in rats

  • Mark G. LeSage
  • Daniel E. Keyler
  • Yoko Hieda
  • Greg Collins
  • Danielle Burroughs
  • Chap Le
  • Paul R. Pentel
Original Investigation

DOI: 10.1007/s00213-005-0027-2

Cite this article as:
LeSage, M.G., Keyler, D.E., Hieda, Y. et al. Psychopharmacology (2006) 184: 409. doi:10.1007/s00213-005-0027-2

Abstract

Rationale

Immunization of rats against nicotine using a nicotine conjugate vaccine reduces the distribution of nicotine to brain in rats and attenuates some of nicotine's physiological and behavioral effects. It is not known whether such a vaccine can attenuate nicotine's reinforcing effects.

Objective

The present experiment was conducted to determine whether a nicotine conjugate vaccine could interfere with the acquisition and maintenance of nicotine self-administration (NSA) in rats given 23 h day−1 access to nicotine.

Methods

To examine acquisition of NSA, rats were vaccinated with nicotine or control immunogen prior to being given access to a 0.01 mg kg−1 infusion−1 nicotine under a fixed-ratio(FR) 1 schedule for week 1, FR 2 for week 2, and FR 3 for week 3. Acquisition of cocaine self-administration (CSA) was similarly examined to determine the specificity of vaccination effects. To examine maintenance of NSA, rats were initially trained to self-administer nicotine under an FR 3 schedule, and then vaccinated with nicotine or control immunogen while NSA continued to be monitored.

Results

NSA was significantly lower in vaccinated rats compared to controls during the acquisition protocol, with a 38% decrease in the number of infusions during the last week of training. The percentage of rats meeting acquisition criteria in the vaccinated group was lower (36%) than that in the control group (70%), but this difference was not statistically significant. Vaccination did not affect acquisition of CSA, demonstrating its specificity for nicotine. Maintenance of NSA was significantly reduced in vaccinated rats as compared to controls after the final vaccine injection, with a mean reduction of 57%. There was no evidence in either protocol that vaccinated rats attempted to compensate for altered nicotine distribution by increasing nicotine intake.

Conclusion

These data suggest that vaccination against nicotine can reduce the reinforcing effects of nicotine in rats and may have therapeutic potential for the treatment of tobacco dependence.

Keywords

NicotineCocaineSelf-administrationRatsVaccinationActive immunizationNicotine-specific antibody

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark G. LeSage
    • 1
    • 2
  • Daniel E. Keyler
    • 1
  • Yoko Hieda
    • 2
  • Greg Collins
    • 2
  • Danielle Burroughs
    • 2
  • Chap Le
    • 3
  • Paul R. Pentel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineMinneapolis Medical Research FoundationMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA