Synaptic plasticity mediating cocaine relapse requires matrix metalloproteinases

Alexander C.W. Smith, Yonatan M. Kupchik, Michael D. Scofield, Cassandra D. Gipson, Armina Wiggins, Charles A. Thomas, Peter W. Kalivas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

98 Scopus citations


Relapse to cocaine use necessitates remodeling excitatory synapses in the nucleus accumbens and synaptic reorganization requires matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) degradation of the extracellular matrix proteins. We found enduring increases in MMP-2 activity in rats after withdrawal from self-administered cocaine and transient increases in MMP-9 during cue-induced cocaine relapse. Cue-induced heroin and nicotine relapse increased MMP activity, and increased MMP activity was required for both cocaine relapse and relapse-associated synaptic plasticity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1655-1657
Number of pages3
JournalNature Neuroscience
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was support by US National Institutes of Health grants DA003906, DA012513 and DA015369.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (all)


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