Ascorbic acid inhibits development of tolerance and dependence to opiates in mice: Possible glutamatergic or dopaminergic modulation
Pharmacology Division, University Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Panjab University, India
S K Kulkarni, Pharmacology Division, University Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Panjab University,India, E-mail: [email protected]
In a recent study, it has been demonstrated that ascorbic acid possessed antidopaminergic activity and modulate the glutamatergic neurotransmission in mice. With this background, the present study was undertaken to study the effect of ascorbic acid on the development of tolerance and dependence to opiate and its mechanism of action. Male Swiss mice weighing 20-25 g were used in the present study. Mice were made physically dependent on opioid by the chronic administration of morphine (10 mg/kg, twice a day, for 9 days) intraperitoneally. Ascorbic acid, haloperidol (dopamine antagonist) or MK 801 (NMDA receptor antagonist) was administered daily for 9 d before challenging the animals with morphine. The development of tolerance was assessed by noting the tail-flick latency on day 1, 3, 9 and 10. On the 10 th day after the measurement of tail-flick latency, animals were challenged with naloxone (2 mg/kg., i.p.) and incidence of escape jumps were recorded by placing the animals in 45 cm high plexiglass container. Ascorbic acid (400-1600 mg/kg) dose dependently inhibited development of tolerance and dependence to morphine as noted from tail-flick latency. When given along with MK 801 (0.01 mg/kg., i.p) or haloperidol (0.1 mg/kg i.p.), ascorbic acid (800 mg/kg., i.p.) potentiated the response of MK 801 or haloperidol. In conclusion, it is hypothesized that inhibition of development of tolerance and dependence to morphine by ascorbic acid appears to have two components, namely dopaminergic and glutamatergic.