Involvement of GABAB receptors in the motor inhibition produced by agonists of brain cannabinoid receptors

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Abstract

The present study was designed to investigate the possibility of activation of GABAB receptors during the motor inhibition caused by cannabimimetics. Adult male rats were injected with an acute dose of arachidonylethanolamide (AEA), Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), baclofen or vehicle, after pretreatment with CGP 35348, a specific antagonist for GABAB receptors, or vehicle, and the behavioral response produced by these compounds tested in an open field. As expected, the administration of either AEA or THC produced a very pronounced motor inhibition, reflected by decreased ambulation and increased time spent in inactivity. The administration of baclofen also produced a marked motor deficit, with similar changes to those observed with both cannabimimetics. Pretreatment with the GABAB antagonist, CGP 35348, prevented the motor inhibition induced by baclofen and also attenuated the motor deficit caused by both cannabimimetics, suggesting a role for this receptor. In summary, a GABAergic influence, acting through GABAB receptors, seems to be involved in mediating motor effects of cannabimimetics, since the blockade of these receptors attenuates cannabimimetic-induced signs of motor inhibition.

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