Perinatal lead exposure alters locomotion induced by amphetamine analogs in rats. Academic Article uri icon


  • AIMS: The precise neurochemical perturbations through which perinatal (gestation/lactation) lead exposure modifies the reinforcement efficacy of various psychoactive drugs (e.g., cocaine, opiates) are unknown. The present study considers the role of altered serotonin and dopamine functionality in perinatal lead-psychostimulant interactions. MAIN METHODS: Female rats were administered a 16-mg lead or a control solution (p.o.) for 30days prior to breeding with non-exposed males. Lead exposure was discontinued at weaning (postnatal day [PND] 21). Starting at PND 120, male rats born to control or lead-exposed dams were injected with either PAL-287 or PAL-353, at doses of 0, 2, 4, 8, or 16umol/kg (i.p.) with each dose given prior to an acute (45min) locomotion test. Whereas PAL-287 is a potent releaser of serotonin, PAL-353 is not. Each drug induces comparable release of norepinephrine (NE) and of dopamine (DA). KEY FINDINGS: Control and lead rats exhibited minimal locomotion to PAL-287. PAL-353 produced a dose-dependent activation of locomotion in control rats relative to the effects of PAL-287 in control rats. Lead-exposed rats exhibited a subsensitivity to PAL-353 at doses of 4 and 8umol/kg. SIGNIFICANCE: The subsensitivity of lead rats to PAL-353 is consistent with a lead-induced diminution of dopamine function, an effect noted earlier for the reuptake inhibitor cocaine (Nation et al. 2000). The similar response of lead and control rats to PAL-287 is inconsistent with diminished serotonin function.

published proceedings

  • Life Sci

author list (cited authors)

  • Clifford, P. S., Hart, N., Rothman, R. B., Blough, B. E., Bratton, G. R., & Wellman, P. J.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Clifford, P Shane||Hart, Nigel||Rothman, Richard B||Blough, Bruce E||Bratton, Gerald R||Wellman, Paul J

publication date

  • January 2011