The NMDA receptor channel blocker memantine and opioid receptor antagonist naltrexone inhibit the saccharin deprivation effect in rats

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Abstract

Several drugs, such as N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor channel blockers (memantine), naltrexone (but not naloxone) and acamprosate, have previously been reported to attenuate the expression of the alcohol deprivation effect, a phenomenon seen as an increase in post-deprivation alcohol consumption. The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of these drugs on the development and expression of the saccharin deprivation effect in adult male Wistar rats. Memantine (13 mg/kg per day) and naltrexone (5 mg/kg, twice daily), but not naloxone (24 mg/kg per day) or acamprosate (200 mg/kg, twice daily), prevented the increase in the consumption of saccharin after a 1-week deprivation from free-choice, unlimited access to saccharin (0.1%, w/v). Taken together with the results of previous studies, these results suggest that naltrexone and memantine attenuate the expression of both the alcohol and saccharin deprivation effects.

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