Chronic cocaine treatment suppresses basal expression of zif268 in rat forebrain: In situ hybridization studies

R. V. Bhat, A. J. Cole, J. M. Baraban

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51 Scopus citations


Transcription regulatory factors are rapidly induced in brain by a wide variety of stimuli and may be important in coordinating changes in gene expression underlying neuronal plasticity. In addition to the transient activation profile typically displayed by many of these genes, zif268 exhibits prominent basal expression in the brain that is dependent on synaptic activity. Accordingly, zif268 may play a key role in regulating neuronal gene expression induced by naturally occurring stimuli. Acute cocaine administration (15 mg/kg i.p.) produces a robust and transient induction of several transcription factors in the brain, including zif268. In the present study we report that, in contrast to the acute effects of a single dose, chronic cocaine treatment (15 mg/kg i.p., twice daily for a total of 10 injections), produces a widespread suppression of basal zif268 mRNA levels in rat forebrain between 8 and 24 hr after the last cocaine injection. This reduction is not evident after a single injection of cocaine or comparable chronic treatment with a structural analog, procaine, that does not share cocaine's uptake inhibitor properties. The suppression of basal zif268 expression may provide a mechanism for producing widespread effects of chronic cocaine administration on neuronal gene expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)343-349
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology


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