Nociceptive stimulus induces release of endogenous β-endorphin in the rat brain

A. Zangen, U. Herzberg, Z. Vogel, G. Yadid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations

Abstract

The hypothesis that the naturally occurring analgesic peptide, β- endorphin, is released in the brain in response to pain had never been directly validated. In this study, we applied a brain microdialysis method for monitoring β-endorphin release in vivo, to test this hypothesis in the brains of conscious, freely moving rats. Herein we first show that endogenous β-endorphin can be measured in vivo in the brain under physiological conditions. Upon induction of a nociceptive stimulus by injection of formalin into the hind-paws of rats, the extracellular levels of β-endorphin in their arcuate nucleus increased by 88%, corresponding to their nociceptive response. This direct evidence for the release of endogenous β-endorphin in the brain in response to nociceptive stimulus indicates a possible mechanism for organisms to cope with pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)659-662
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience
Volume85
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1998

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by Bar-Ilan Research Foundation (no. 2391).

Funding

This research was supported by Bar-Ilan Research Foundation (no. 2391).

FundersFunder number
Bar-Ilan Research Foundation2391

    Keywords

    • Formalin-test
    • Microdialysis
    • Nociception
    • Pain
    • β-endorphin

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