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    Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability


    Henderson, Brandon J. and Wall, Teagan R. and Henley, Beverley and Kim, Charlene H. and McKinney, Sheri and Lester, Henry A. (2017) Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability. Neuropsychopharmacology, 42. pp. 2285-2291. ISSN 0893-133X

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    Abstract

    Understanding why the quit rate among smokers of menthol cigarettes is lower than non-menthol smokers requires identifying the neurons that are altered by nicotine, menthol, and acetylcholine. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) mediate the positive reinforcing effects of nicotine. Using mouse models, we show that menthol enhances nicotine-induced changes in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed on midbrain DA neurons. Menthol plus nicotine upregulates nAChR number and function on midbrain DA neurons more than nicotine alone. Menthol also enhances nicotine-induced changes in DA neuron excitability. In a conditioned place preference (CPP) assay, we observed that menthol plus nicotine produces greater reward-related behavior than nicotine alone. Our results connect changes in midbrain DA neurons to menthol-induced enhancements of nicotine reward-related behavior and may help explain how smokers of menthol cigarettes exhibit reduced cessation rates.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Addiction; Behavioural methods; Electrophysiology; Excitability; Molecular neuroscience; Neurophysiology; Reward;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Science and Engineering > Research Institutes > Human Health Institute
    Item ID: 11560
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1038/npp.2017.72
    Depositing User: Beverley Henley
    Date Deposited: 01 Nov 2019 15:29
    Journal or Publication Title: Neuropsychopharmacology
    Publisher: Springer Nature (American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP))
    Refereed: Yes
    URI:

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