Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology

, Volume 332, Issue 3, pp 208–212 | Cite as

Studies on the separate roles of forebrain and spinal serotonin in morphine analgesia

  • Stefano Romandini
  • Ennio Esposito
  • Rosario Samanin
Original Articles


5,7-Dihydroxytryptamine (5,7-DHT) injections in the ventromedial tegmentum (VMT) at the level of nucleus interpeduncularis or in the ventral raphe area (VR) of the medulla oblongata were used to study the separate roles of forebrain and spinal 5-HT in the antinociceptive effect of morphine in rats. 5,7-DHT injections in the VMT, which caused marked, selective depletion of forebrain 5-HT, did not modify the effect of morphine in the hot plate and tail immersion tests. Direct injection of 5,7-DHT into the nucleus raphe medianus also failed to modify the effect of morphine in the two tests used to measure nociceptive responses. The effect of morphine was significantly reduced 30 min after injection to rats depleted of spinal 5-HT by 5,7-DHT injected in the VR but the areas under the curves between vehicle and 5,7-DHT treated animals were not significantly different. The data show that the integrity of 5-HT neurons in the forebrain is not necessary for the antinociceptive effect of morphine and a substantial amount of this effect is still present in rats with marked depletion of spinal 5-HT.

Key words

Forebrain 5-HT Spinal 5-HT Morphine Analgesia 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stefano Romandini
    • 1
  • Ennio Esposito
    • 1
  • Rosario Samanin
    • 1
  1. 1.Istituto di Ricerce FarmacologicheMilanoItaly

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