[Molecular mechanism of drug tolerance and dependence].

Nippon yakurigaku zasshi. Folia pharmacologica Japonica

PubMedID: 1660443

Osugi T, Ikemoto M, Taniura H, Miki N. [Molecular mechanism of drug tolerance and dependence]. Nippon Yakurigaku Zasshi. 1991;98(3):187-95.
Morphine and ethanol drugs known to develop tolerance and dependence, induce changes in the adenylate cyclase system. Morphine inhibits the adenylate cyclase activity in NG108-15 cells and causes increases in adenylate cyclase synthesis and the down-regulation of opiate receptors in cells treated for several days. Chronic exposure of NG108-15 cells to ethanol also causes a decrease in the mRNA of the GTP-binding protein (Gs). These observations suggest the possibility that a group of genes is expressed in response to morphine or ethanol during the acquisition of tolerance and dependence. Recently, it has been reported that cAMP regulates a number of genes through a cAMP response element (CRE) in their promotor regions and that nuclear CRE-binding proteins bind specifically to the CRE to stimulate the transcription of cAMP-responsive genes. The gel shift assay with a single stranded oligo-DNA of CRE in a somatostatin promotor region was employed to examine the possibility of transcriptional regulation of cAMP-inducible genes by chronic morphine or ethanol treatment of NG108-15 cells. When the nuclear proteins from the cells treated with morphine or ethanol for several days were provided for the assay, the amounts of DNA-protein complex were decreased. The decreased complexes were recovered by 1-2 days after morphine withdrawal. The nuclear proteins were purified partially by a combination of chromatography on Q-Sepharose, Sephacryl S-300 and DNA affinity-Sepharose. Changes in CRE-binding proteins from the cells treated chronically with morphine or ethanol suggest that these drugs can modulate the expression of cAMP-inducible genes through which tolerance and dependence may develop.