Role of orexin-1 receptors in the dorsal hippocampus (CA1 region) in expression and extinction of the morphine-induced conditioned place preference in the rats

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Orexinergic system is involved in reward processing and drug addiction. Objectives here, we investigated the effect of intra-hippocampal CA1 administration of orexin-1 receptor (OX1r) antagonist on the expression, and extinction of morphine-induced place preference in rats. Conditioned place preference (CPP) was induced by subcutaneous injection of morphine (5 mg/kg) during a 3-day conditioning phase. Two experimental plots were designed; SB334867 as a selective OX1r antagonist was dissolved in 12% DMSO, prepared in solutions with different concentrations (3, 30, and 300 nM), and microinjected into the CA1 and some neighboring regions (0.5 μl/side), bilaterally. CPP score and locomotor activity were recorded during the CPP test. Results demonstrated that intra-CA1 administration of the OX1r antagonist attenuates the expression of morphine-induced CPP. Furthermore, higher concentrations of SB334867 facilitated the extinction period of morphine-induced CPP and reduced its latency. Nevertheless, solely administration of DMSO did not have any influence on the CPP scores and locomotion in both phases. Our findings suggest that OX1rs in the CA1 region of the hippocampus are involved in the expression of morphine CPP. Moreover, blockade of OX1rs could facilitate extinction and may extinguish the ability of drug-related cues. It seems that the antagonist might be considered as a propitious therapeutic agent in suppressing drug-seeking behaviors.

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