(1/4441) Spinal antinociceptive synergism between morphine and clonidine persists in mice made acutely or chronically tolerant to morphine.

Morphine (Mor) tolerance has been attributed to a reduction of opioid-adrenergic antinociceptive synergy at the spinal level. The present experiments tested the interaction of intrathecally (i.t.) administered Mor-clonidine (Clon) combinations in mice made acutely or chronically tolerant to Mor. ICR mice were pretreated with Mor either acutely (40 nmol i.t., 8 h; 100 mg/kg s.c., 4 h) or chronically (3 mg/kg s.c. every 6 h days 1 and 2; 5 mg/kg s.c. every 6 h days 3 and 4). Antinociception was detected via the hot water (52.5 degrees C) tail-flick test. After the tail-flick latencies returned to baseline levels, dose-response curves were generated to Mor, Clon, and Mor-Clon combinations in tolerant and control mice. Development of tolerance was confirmed by significant rightward shifts of the Mor dose-response curves in tolerant mice compared with controls. Isobolographic analysis was conducted; the experimental combined ED50 values were compared statistically against their respective theoretical additive ED50 values. In all Mor-pretreated groups, the combination of Mor and Clon resulted in significant leftward shifts in the dose-response curves compared with those of each agonist administered separately. In all tolerant and control groups, the combination of Mor and Clon produced an ED50 value significantly less than the corresponding theoretical additive ED50 value. Mor and Clon synergized in Mor-tolerant as well as in control mice. Spinally administered adrenergic/opioid synergistic combinations may be effective therapeutic strategies to manage pain in patients apparently tolerant to the analgesic effects of Mor.  (+info)

(2/4441) Modulation of Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II activity by acute and chronic morphine administration in rat hippocampus: differential regulation of alpha and beta isoforms.

Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMK II) has been shown to be involved in the regulation of opioid receptor signaling. The present study showed that acute morphine treatment significantly increased both Ca2+/calmodulin-independent and Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent activities of CaMK II in the rat hippocampus, with little alteration in the protein level of either alpha or beta isoform of CaMK II. However, chronic morphine treatment, by which rats were observed to develop apparent tolerance to morphine, significantly down-regulated both Ca2+/calmodulin-independent and Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent activities of CaMK II and differentially regulated the expression of alpha and beta isoforms of CaMK II at protein and mRNA levels. Application of naloxone or discontinuation of morphine treatment after chronic morphine administration, which induced the withdrawal syndrome of morphine, resulted in the overshoot of CaMK II (at both protein and mRNA levels) and its kinase activity. The phenomena of overshoot were mainly observed in the beta isoform of CaMK II but not in the alpha isoform. The effects of both acute and chronic morphine treatments on CaMK II could be completely abolished by the concomitant application of naloxone, indicating that the effects of morphine were achieved through activation of opioid receptors. Our data demonstrated that both acute and chronic morphine treatments could effectively modulate the activity and the expression of CaMK II in the hippocampus.  (+info)

(3/4441) Absence of G-protein activation by mu-opioid receptor agonists in the spinal cord of mu-opioid receptor knockout mice.

1. The ability of mu-opioid receptor agonists to activate G-proteins in the spinal cord of mu-opioid receptor knockout mice was examined by monitoring the binding to membranes of the non-hydrolyzable analogue of GTP, guanosine-5'-O-(3-[35S]thio)triphosphate ([35S]GTPgammaS). 2. In the receptor binding study, Scatchard analysis of [3H][D-Ala2,NHPhe4,Gly-ol]enkephalin ([3H]DAMGO; mu-opioid receptor ligand) binding revealed that the heterozygous mu-knockout mice displayed approximately 40% reduction in the number of mu-receptors as compared to the wild-type mice. The homozygous mu-knockout mice showed no detectable mu-binding sites. 3. The newly isolated mu-opioid peptides endomorphin-1 and -2, the synthetic selective mu-opioid receptor agonist DAMGO and the prototype of mu-opioid receptor agonist morphine each produced concentration-dependent increases in [35S]GTPgammaS binding in wild-type mice. This stimulation was reduced by 55-70% of the wild-type level in heterozygous, and virtually eliminated in homozygous knockout mice. 4. No differences in the [35S]GTPgammaS binding stimulated by specific delta1- ([D-Pen2,5]enkephalin), delta2-([D-Ala2]deltorphin II) or kappa1-(U50,488H) opioid receptor agonists were noted in mice of any of the three genotypes. 5. The data clearly indicate that mu-opioid receptor gene products play a key role in G-protein activation by endomorphins, DAMGO and morphine in the mouse spinal cord. They support the idea that mu-opioid receptor densities could be rate-limiting steps in the G-protein activation by mu-opioid receptor agonists in the spinal cord. These thus indicate a limited physiological mu-receptor reserve. Furthermore, little change in delta1-, delta2- or kappa1-opioid receptor-G-protein complex appears to accompany mu-opioid receptor gene deletions in this region.  (+info)

(4/4441) Behavioral and physiological effects of remifentanil and alfentanil in healthy volunteers.

BACKGROUND: The subjective and psychomotor effects of remifentanil have not been evaluated. Accordingly, the authors used mood inventories and psychomotor tests to characterize the effects of remifentanil in healthy, non-drug-abusing volunteers. Alfentanil was used as a comparator drug. METHODS: Ten healthy volunteers were enrolled in a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, crossover trial in which they received an infusion of saline, remifentanil, or alfentanil for 120 min. The age- and weight-adjusted infusions (determined with STANPUMP, a computer modeling software package) were given to achieve three predicted constant plasma levels for 40 min each of remifentanil (0.75, 1.5, and 3 ng/ml) and alfentanil (16, 32, and 64 ng/ml). Mood forms and psychomotor tests were completed, and miosis was assessed, during and after the infusions. In addition, analgesia was tested at each dose level using a cold-pressor test. RESULTS: Remifentanil had prototypic micro-like opioid subjective effects, impaired psychomotor performance, and produced analgesia. Alfentanil at the dose range tested had more mild effects on these measures, and the analgesia data indicated that a 40:1 potency ratio, rather than the 20:1 ratio we used, may exist between remifentanil and alfentanil. A psychomotor test administered 60 min after the remifentanil infusion was discontinued showed that the volunteers were still impaired, although they reported feeling no drug effects. CONCLUSIONS: The notion that the pharmacodynamic effects of remifentanil are extremely short-lived after the drug is no longer administered must be questioned given our findings that psychomotor effects were still apparent 1 h after the infusion was discontinued.  (+info)

(5/4441) Comparison of three solutions of ropivacaine/fentanyl for postoperative patient-controlled epidural analgesia.

BACKGROUND: Ropivacaine, 0.2%, is a new local anesthetic approved for epidural analgesia. The addition of 4 microg/ml fentanyl improves analgesia from epidural ropivacaine. Use of a lower concentration of ropivacaine-fentanyl may further improve analgesia or decrease side effects. METHODS: Thirty patients undergoing lower abdominal surgery were randomized in a double-blinded manner to receive one of three solutions: 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl 0.1% ropivacaine-2 microg fentanyl, or 0.05% ropivacaine-1 microg fentanyl for patient-controlled epidural analgesia after standardized combined epidural and general anesthesia. Patient-controlled epidural analgesia settings and adjustments for the three solutions were standardized to deliver equivalent drug doses. Pain scores (rest, cough, and ambulation), side effects (nausea, pruritus, sedation, motor block, hypotension, and orthostasis), and patient-controlled epidural analgesia consumption were measured for 48 h. RESULTS: All three solutions produced equivalent analgesia. Motor block was significantly more common (30 vs. 0%) and more intense with the 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl solution. Other side effects were equivalent between solutions and mild in severity. A significantly smaller volume of 0.2% ropivacaine-4 microg fentanyl solution was used, whereas the 0.1% ropivacaine-2 microg fentanyl group used a significantly greater amount of ropivacaine and fentanyl. CONCLUSIONS: Lesser concentrations of ropivacaine and fentanyl provide comparable analgesia with less motor block despite the use of similar amounts of ropivacaine and fentanyl. This finding suggests that concentration of local anesthetic solution at low doses is a primary determinant of motor block with patient-controlled epidural analgesia after lower abdominal surgery.  (+info)

(6/4441) Transdermal nitroglycerine enhances spinal sufentanil postoperative analgesia following orthopedic surgery.

BACKGROUND: Sufentanil is a potent but short-acting spinal analgesic used to manage perioperative pain. This study evaluated the influence of transdermal nitroglycerine on the analgesic action of spinal sufentanil in patients undergoing orthopedic surgery. METHODS: Fifty-six patients were randomized to one of four groups. Patients were premedicated with 0.05-0.1 mg/kg intravenous midazolam and received 15 mg bupivacaine plus 2 ml of the test drug intrathecally (saline or 10 microg sufentanil). Twenty to 30 min after the spinal puncture, a transdermal patch of either 5 mg nitroglycerin or placebo was applied. The control group received spinal saline and transdermal placebo. The sufentanil group received spinal sufentanil and transdermal placebo. The nitroglycerin group received spinal saline and transdermal nitroglycerine patch. Finally, the sufentanil-nitroglycerin group received spinal sufentanil and transdermal nitroglycerine. Pain and adverse effects were evaluated using a 10-cm visual analog scale. RESULTS: The time to first rescue analgesic medication was longer for the sufentanil-nitroglycerin group (785+/-483 min) compared with the other groups (P<0.005). The time to first rescue analgesics was also longer for the sufentanil group compared with the control group (P<0.05). The sufentanil-nitroglycerin group group required less rescue analgesics in 24 h compared with the other groups (P<0.02) and had lesser 24-h pain visual analog scale scores compared with the control group (P<0.005), although these scores were similar to the sufentanil and nitroglycerin groups (P>0.05). The incidence of perioperative adverse effects was similar among groups (P>0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Transdermal nitroglycerine alone (5 mg/day), a nitric oxide generator, did not result in postoperative analgesia itself, but it prolonged the analgesic effect of spinal sufentanil (10 microg) and provided 13 h of effective postoperative analgesia after knee surgery.  (+info)

(7/4441) Nitrocinnamoyl and chlorocinnamoyl derivatives of dihydrocodeinone: in vivo and in vitro characterization of mu-selective agonist and antagonist activity.

Two 14beta-p-nitrocinnamoyl derivatives of dihydrocodeinone, 14beta-(p-nitrocinnamoylamino)-7,8-dihydrocodeinone (CACO) and N-cyclopropylmethylnor-14beta-(p-nitrocinnamoylamino)- 7, 8-dihydrocodeinone (N-CPM-CACO), and the corresponding chlorocinnamoylamino analogs, 14beta-(p-chlorocinnamoylamino)-7, 8-dihydrocodeinone (CAM) and N-cyclopropylmethylnor-14beta-(p-chlorocinnamoylamino) -7, 8-dihydrocodeinone (MC-CAM), were tested in opioid receptor binding assays and the mouse tail-flick test to characterize the opioid affinity, selectivity, and antinociceptive properties of these compounds. In competition binding assays, all four compounds bound to the mu opioid receptor with high affinity. When bovine striatal membranes were incubated with any of the four dihydrocodeinones, binding to the mu receptor was inhibited in a concentration-dependent, wash-resistant manner. Saturation binding experiments demonstrated that the wash-resistant inhibition of mu binding was due to a decrease in the Bmax value for the binding of the mu-selective peptide [3H][D-Ala2, MePhe4,Gly(ol)5] enkephalin and not a change in the Kd value, suggesting an irreversible interaction of the compounds with the mu receptor. In the mouse 55 degrees C warm water tail-flick test, both CACO and N-CPM-CACO acted as short-term mu-selective agonists when administered by i. c.v. injection, whereas CAM and MC-CAM produced no measurable antinociception at doses up to 30 nmol. Pretreatment of mice for 24 h with any of the four dihydrocodeinone derivatives produced a dose-dependent antagonism of antinociception mediated by the mu but not the delta or kappa receptors. Long-term antagonism of morphine-induced antinociception lasted for at least 48 h after i.c. v. administration. Finally, shifts in the morphine dose-response lines after 24-h pretreatment with the four dihydrocodeinone compounds suggest that the nitrocinnamoylamino derivatives may produce a greater magnitude long-term antagonism of morphine-induced antinociception than the chlorocinnamoylamino analogs.  (+info)

(8/4441) Antinociceptive properties of the new alkaloid, cis-8, 10-di-N-propyllobelidiol hydrochloride dihydrate isolated from Siphocampylus verticillatus: evidence for the mechanism of action.

The antinociceptive action of the alkaloid cis-8, 10-di-n-propyllobelidiol hydrochloride dehydrate (DPHD), isolated from Siphocampylus verticillatus, given i.p., p.o., i.t., or i.c.v., was assessed in chemical and thermal models of nociception in mice, such as acetic acid-induced abdominal constriction, formalin- and capsaicin-induced licking, and hot-plate and tail-flick tests. DPHD given by i.p., p.o., i.t., or i.c.v. elicited significant and dose-related antinociception. At the ID50 level, DPHD was about 2- to 39-fold more potent than aspirin and dipyrone, but it was about 14- to 119-fold less potent than morphine. Its analgesic action was reversed by treatment of animals with p-chlorophenylalanine, naloxone, cyprodime, naltrindole, nor-binaltrorphimine, L-arginine, or pertussis toxin. Its action was also modulated by adrenal-gland hormones but was not affected by gamma-aminobutyric acid type A or type B antagonist, bicuculine, or phaclofen, nor was it affected by glibenclamide. DPHD, given daily for up to 7 days, did not develop tolerance to itself nor did it induce cross-tolerance to morphine. However, animals rendered tolerant to morphine presented cross-tolerance to DPHD. The antinociception of DPHD was not secondary to its anti-inflammatory effect, nor was it associated with nonspecific effects such as muscle relaxation or sedation. DPHD, in contrast to morphine, did not decrease charcoal meal transit in mice, nor did it inhibit electrical field stimulation of the guinea pig ileum or mouse vas deferens in vitro. Thus, DPHD produces dose-dependent and pronounced systemic, spinal, and supraspinal antinociception in mice, including against the neurogenic nociception induced by formalin and capsaicin. Its antinociceptive effect involves multiple mechanisms of action, namely interaction with mu, delta, or kappa opioid systems, L-arginine-nitric oxide and serotonin pathways, activation of Gi protein sensitive to pertussis toxin, and modulation by endogenous glucocorticoids.  (+info)