Augmentation of the neurochemical effects of cocaine in the ventral striatum and medial prefrontal cortex following preexposure to amphetamine, but not nicotine: an in vivo microdialysis study. Academic Article uri icon


  • This study assessed the ability of cocaine to increase synaptic levels of dopamine (DA) in the ventral striatum (VS) and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) following repeated daily exposure to amphetamine or nicotine. In vivo microdialysis was used to assay DA levels in the awake freely moving male Sprague-Dawley rats. Three days following guide cannula implantation, subjects received 9 daily preexposure injections of amphetamine (1.0 mg/kg salt weight, IP), nicotine (0.6 mg/kg base weight, SC), or vehicle. Probes were then inserted and perfused with Ringer's solution overnight. Once stable baseline levels of DA were established, the subjects received a cocaine (15 mg/kg, IP) challenge injection and dialysate samples were collected every 20 minutes. Subjects preexposed to vehicle exhibited a 200% increase in DA levels in the VS and a 170% increase in the mPFC following the cocaine injection. DA recovery was significantly augmented in both regions in amphetamine-preexposed subjects with 450% and 285% increases above baseline levels observed in the VS and mPFC, respectively. In contrast, cocaine-induced DA levels in nicotine-preexposed subjects did not differ significantly from vehicle-preexposed controls in either brain region. Data are discussed in terms of alterations in the locomotor activating and reinforcing effects of cocaine following similar preexposure procedures.

published proceedings

  • Life Sci

author list (cited authors)

  • Horger, B. A., Valadez, A., Wellman, P. J., & Schenk, S.

citation count

  • 10

complete list of authors

  • Horger, BA||Valadez, A||Wellman, PJ||Schenk, S

publication date

  • January 1994