STEP signaling pathway mediates psychomotor stimulation and morphine withdrawal symptoms …

Citation: Experimental & Molecular Medicine (2016) 48, e212; doi:10.1038/emm.2016.1Published online 26 February 2016Yoon-Jung Kim1,11, Young Kang1,11, Hye-Yeon Park1, Jae-Ran Lee2,3, Dae-Yeul Yu3,4, Takuya Murata5, Yoichi Gondo5, Jung Hwan Hwang1, Yong-Hoon Kim1, Chul-Ho Lee1,3, Myungchull Rhee6, Pyung-Lim Han7,8, Bong-Hyun Chung3,9, Hyun-Jun Lee10 and Kyoung-Shim Kim1,3 Top of page Introduction Morphine and other μ-opioid agonists elicit beneficial analgesic effects, but they have high tolerance and addiction potential. Many drugs of abuse, including morphine, stimulate dopamine transmission in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and dorsal striatum,1 areas that regulate reward behavior and motor activity.2, 3 Morphine binds to μ-opioid receptors (MORs), which exert their cellular effects via GTP-binding proteins Gi/o.4 Opioid and dopamine receptors are abundantly expressed in medium spiny neurons, the main cell type in the striatum.5 However, the molecular mechanisms operating downstream of opioid and dopamine receptors, which regulate morphine-induced reward behavior, psychomotor activity, tolerance and physical dependency, have…


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