Lobelane decreases methamphetamine self-administration in rats

Nichole M. Neugebauer, Steven B. Harrod, Dustin J. Stairs, Peter A. Crooks, Linda P. Dwoskin, Michael T. Bardo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Lobelane, a minor alkaloid of Lobelia inflata and a synthetic, des-oxy analog of lobeline, has good affinity for the vesicular monoamine transporter and the dopamine transporter. The current study examined the ability of lobelane to specifically decrease methamphetamine self-administration. Rats were trained on a fixed ratio 5 schedule of reinforcement to self-administer methamphetamine (0.05 mg/kg/infusion, i.v.) or to respond for sucrose pellets. Upon reaching stable responding, rats were pretreated with lobelane (0.1, 1, 3, 5.6, or 10 mg/kg, s.c.) or saline, 15 min prior to the operant session. To assess the effect of repeated lobelane on methamphetamine self-administration, rats were pretreated with lobelane (5.6 or 10 mg/kg, s.c.) for 7 sessions. Behavioral specificity was further investigated by assessing the effects of lobelane (0.1, 1, 3, 5, or 10 mg/kg, s.c.) or saline on locomotor activity. Within the dose range tested, lobelane dose-dependently decreased methamphetamine self-administration, while having no effect on sucrose-maintained responding. Locomotor activity was decreased following only the highest dose of lobelane (10 mg/kg). Across repeated pretreatments, tolerance developed to the effect of lobelane on methamphetamine self-administration, demonstrating that the ability of lobelane to specifically decrease methamphetamine self-administration is a transient effect. Thus, taken together, the results show that although lobelane interacts with the pharmacological targets believed to be responsible for its ability to decrease methamphetamine self-administration, removal of the oxygen functionalities from the lobeline molecule may have afforded a compound with an altered pharmacokinetic and/or pharmacodynamic profile.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-38
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 24 2007

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded by NIDA grant R01 DA13519. For purposes of full disclosure, the University of Kentucky holds patents on lobeline and lobelane, which have been licensed by Yaupon Therapeutics, Inc. (Lexington, KY). A potential royalty stream to L.P.D. and P.A.C. may occur consistent with University of Kentucky policy, and both L.P.D. and P.A.C. are founders of, and have financial interest in, Yaupon Therapeutics, Inc.


  • Lobelane
  • Lobeline
  • Methamphetamine
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Self-administration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


Dive into the research topics of 'Lobelane decreases methamphetamine self-administration in rats'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this