A neurotensin analog blocks cocaine-conditioned place preference and reinstatement

Mona Boules, Rebecca Netz, Paul A. Fredrickson, Elliott Richelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Neurotensin (NT) is a neuropeptide that acts as a neurotransmitter and neuromodulator in the central nervous system. Several studies suggest a therapeutic role for NT analogs in nicotine and other psychostimulant addictions. We studied the effects of the nonselective NT receptor agonist NT69L, which has equal affinity for the two major NT receptors, NTS1 and NTS2, on the expression of cocaineconditioned place preference (cocaine-CPP) and reinstatement after extinction. Robust cocaine-CPP was obtained after 5 days of conditioning. Extinction was induced using eight repeated daily injections of saline. Reinstatement was prompted by priming with one injection of cocaine (12 mg/kg intraperitoneally). On the test day, NT69L (1 mg/kg intraperitoneally) was administered 30 min before assessing cocaine-CPP. Extinction led to the loss of cocaine-CPP. One injection of cocaine (12 mg/kg intraperitoneally) for cocaine priming reinstated cocaine- CPP. NT69L blocked cocaine-CPP reinstatement in cocaineprimed animals. In addition, NT69L blocked cocaine-CPP reinstatement when administered before priming with cocaine. Thus, the NT agonist NT69L blocked both cocaine- CPP and reinstatement to cocaine preference. NT69L may exert this action by modulating the mesocorticolimbic dopamine and glutamatergic pathways involved in addiction and relapse processes. Therefore, NT agonists may represent a novel therapy for the treatment of addiction to cocaine and possibly to other psychostimulants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)236-239
Number of pages4
JournalBehavioural Pharmacology
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Apr 2016


  • Cocaine
  • Conditioned place preference
  • Mouse
  • Neurotensin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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