Corticosterone reversibly alters brain α-bungarotoxin binding and nicotine sensitivity

Elizabeth U. Grun, James R. Pauly, Amy E. Bullock, Allan C. Collins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Previous studies have shown that chronic Corticosterone (CCS) treatment via subcutaneous pellets elicits reduced sensitivity to many actions of nicotine in mice as well as decreased brain α-bungarotoxin (α-BTX) binding. We report here the time courses of altered sensitivity to nicotine, as measured by acoustic startle, Y-maze crossing and rearing activities, heart rate, and body temperature, and α-BTX binding during and after CCS treatment. CCS treatment resulted in rapid decreases in sensitivity to nicotine for four of the five responses that were measured, as well as rapid changes in α-BTX binding. Sensitivity to nicotine returned to control levels within 3 days following pellet removal, but α-BTX binding returned to control levels in most brain regions 9-11 days after pellet removal. Because the restoration of control sensitivity to nicotine occurred long before α-BTX binding returned to control levels, it seems likely that factors other than changes in α-BTX binding cause chronic CCS-induced changes in sensitivity to nicotine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)629-635
Number of pages7
JournalPharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 1995

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authorst hankD awnC aillouetf or assistancwe ith preparation of the manuscripTt.h is work wass upportebdy a grantf rom the NationalI nstituteo n DrugA buse( DA-05131A).. C.C. is supported, in part, by a ResearchS cientistA ward from NIDA (DA-00197).


  • Corticosterone
  • Hypothermia
  • Locomotor activity
  • Nicotine
  • Nicotinic receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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