Evidence that the aversive effects of opioid antagonists and kappa-agonists are centrally mediated.


The role of central versus peripheral opioid receptors in mediating the aversive effects of opioids was examined by use of an unbiased place preference conditioning procedure in rats. The non-selective opioid antagonist naloxone (NLX) produced conditioned aversions for the drug-associated place after subcutaneous (SC) as well as intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration. Place aversions were also observed in response to the ICV administration of the selective mu-antagonist CTOP. In contrast, the selective delta-antagonist ICI 174,864 and the selective kappa-antagonist norbinaltorphimine (nor-BNI) (ICV) were without effect. Place aversions were also produced by central applications of the selective kappa-agonist U50,488H and the dynorphin derivative E-2078. For those opioid ligands tested, the doses required to produce place aversions were substantially lower following ICV as compared to SC administration. These data confirm that kappa-agonists and opioid antagonists produce aversive states in the drug-naive animal and demonstrate that this effect is centrally mediated. Furthermore, the ability of NLX and CTOP, in contrast to both ICI 174,864 and nor-BNI, to produce place aversions suggests that the aversive effects of opioid antagonists result from the blockade of mu-receptors.


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@article{BalsKubik1989EvidenceTT, title={Evidence that the aversive effects of opioid antagonists and kappa-agonists are centrally mediated.}, author={Regine Bals-Kubik and Albert Herz and Toni Shaun Shippenberg}, journal={Psychopharmacology}, year={1989}, volume={98 2}, pages={203-6} }