Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Abstract: In this report, we describe an HPLC with electrochemical detection assay for the simultaneous measurement of levels of morphine, serotonin, 5-hydroxyindole-3-acetic acid, and homovanillic acid in dialysates of various brain areas and CSF in the awake rat. Morphine could be detected in the dialysates after a single intraperitoneal injection, with doses as low as 1.0 mg/kg. The time course of extracellular morphine content in the lateral hypothalamus, striatum, cerebellum, periaqueductal gray, and dorsal horn of the spinal cord and in CSF, from the ventricles and cisterna magna, was similar. We detected morphine in the first 15-min sample, and levels peaked 45–60 min after injection. Maximal dialysate levels, however, varied with the type of dialysis probe used and the area sampled. The most efficient in vivo recovery was in CSF dialysates from the cisterna magna, presumably because of minimal tissue interference with the dialysis probe. For this reason, the cisterna is an ideal region for sampling CSF. Morphine had no significant effect on the extracellular concentrations of serotonin in any of the areas studied and did not modify or only slightly increased levels of tissue metabolites; however, morphine markedly increased the CSF levels of 5-hydroxyindole-3-acetic acid and homovanillic acid. Because microdialysis in freely moving animals permits assessment of the behavioral effects of morphine while continuously monitoring the drug levels in discrete brain regions, this approach will greatly facilitate future studies of the neurochemical basis of morphine's effects in the brain.
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