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Year : 2000  |  Volume : 32  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 126-128

Involvement of NMDA-nitric oxide pathway in the facilitatory effect of morphine in hypoxia-induced lethality in mice

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I Dokmeci

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Objective: The contribution of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors and nitric oxide (NO) to the effect of morphine on hypoxia-induced lethality was investigated in the present experiments. Methods: Mice were subjected to hypoxia by putting them in a tightly closed glass container. The latencies for death were recorded. Results: MK-801 (0.25 mg/kg, i.p.) and N(-nitro-L-arginine-methyl ester (L-NAME, 10 mg/kg, i.p.), at doses which themselves produced no effect on hypoxia-induced lethality, attenuated the hypoxic effect of morphine (10 mg/kg, i.p.) significantly, but not completely. Concomitant administrations of NMDA (10 mg/ kg) or L-arginine (500 mg/kg, i.p.), completely reversed the protective effects of MK-801 and L-NAME, indicating the possible involvement of NO-linked NMDA receptors in the hypoxic effect of morphine. Conclusion: Hypoxia induced lethality may be, at least partly, mediated through the NMDA-NO pathway.


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