Morphine-induced conditioned place preference and the alterations of p-ERK, p-CREB and c-fos levels in hypothalamus and hippocampus: The effects of physical stress


P. Pahlevani, Z. Fatahi, M. Moradi, A. Haghparast

Abstract


The hypothalamus and hippocampus are important areas involved in stress responses and reward processing. In addition, ERK/CREB pathway plays a critical role in the control of cellular responses to stress and reward. In the current study, effects of acute and subchronic stress on the alteration of p-ERK, p-CREB and c-fos levels in the hypothalamus and hippocampus of saline- or morphine-treated animals during morphine-induced conditioned place preference (CPP) procedure were investigated. Male Wistar rats were divided into two saline- and morphine-treated supergroups. Each supergroup includes of control, acute stress and subchronic stress groups. In all of groups, the CPP procedure was done, afterward the alternation of p-ERK/ERK ratio, p-CREB/CREB ratio and c-fos level in the hypothalamus and hippocampus were estimated by Western blot analysis. The results indicated that in saline- or morphine-treated animals, p-ERK/ERK ratio, p-CREB/CREB ratio and c-fos level increased after application of acute and subchronic stress (except for p-ERK/ERK ratio in morphine-control group). Our findings revealed that in saline- or morphine-treated animals, acute and subcronic stress increased the p-ERK/ERK ratio, p-CREB/CREB ratio and c-fos level in the hypothalamus and hippocampus and this enhancement in morphine-treated animals, was more considerable than that in saline-treated animals.

Keywords


Hypothalamus, Hippocampus, Reward, Forced swim stress, Conditioned place preference.

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