Differential cross-tolerance development between single and repeated immobilization stress on the antinociceptive effect induced by β-endorphin, 5-hydroxytryptamine, morphine, and WIN55,212-2 in the inflammatory mouse pain mode
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We have evaluated the possible underlying mechanisms of immobilization stress-induced analgesia (SIA) by behavioral cross-tolerance studies and molecular studies. In the behavioral studies, the cross-tolerance between single or repeated immobilization SIA and the antinociceptive effects of β-endorphin, morphine, 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), or WIN55,212-2 were assessed. Both single and repeated (×7) immobilization stress significanly attenuated the β-endorphin and 5-hydroxytryptamine-induced antinociception in the 2nd phase of formalin response, respectively. However, these cross-tolerances disappeared in prolonged repetition of the stress (×14). Neither single nor repeated (×7 and ×14) immobilization stress affected the antinociceptive effect of morphine or WIN55,212-2 at all. We also found that immobilization stress activated hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) gene and β-endorphin expression. Since, it has potent inhibitory activity on the noxious stimuli-induced POMC expression, immobilization stress seemed to dissipate the POMC gene expression process. Meanwhile, we did not find any changes in the opioid receptors’ (mu-, delta- and kappa-receptor) and the cannabinoid receptors’ (CB1 and CB2) expressions in the midbrain regions elicited by single or repeated stress. These results suggested that a single immobilization stress activates the descending pain modulatory system, which is mainly mediated through endorphinergic and serotonergic activation. Moreover, the tolerance of SIA induced by repeated stresses may be due to the prolonged activation of these systems induced by repeated immobilization.
Key wordsβ-Endorphin 5-HT Cannabinoid Immobilization Stress-induced
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