Responses of Motor- and Nonmotor-Related Neostriatal Neurons to Amphetamine and Neuroleptic Drugs
The neostriatum has been implicated in the behavioral response to amphetamine and in the ability of neuroleptic drugs to attenuate this response (e.g., Rebec and Bashore, 1984). Recent efforts to identify the mechanisms underlying amphetamine-induced behavioral effects have focused on single-unit recordings of neostriatal activity in freely moving animals. When such recordings are obtained exclusively from neurons that are active in rats performing a locomotor task, amphetamine causes a further increase in firing rate (West et al., 1987). In contrast, neurons sampled when animals are resting quietly show a heterogeneous response to amphetamine that includes both excitations and inhibitions (Gardiner et al., 1988; Ryan et al., 1989). These divergent results may reflect a differential action of amphetamine on motor- and nonmotor-related neurons. In an initial test of this hypothesis, we found that cells activated during movement were significantly more likely to increase their firing rate to amphetamine than neurons showing activity unrelated to movement (Haracz et al., 1989). In this report, we extend this research and also compare the ability of haloperidol, a classical neuroleptic that blocks virtually all components of the amphetamine behavioral response, and clozapine, an atypical drug that reverses relatively few amphetamine-induced behaviors (Tschanz and Rebec, 1989), to block the neuronal response to amphetamine.
KeywordsFiring Rate Nucleus Accumbens Chloral Hydrate Neuroleptic Drug Motor Side Effect
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