In vivo specific binding of [3H]-1-nicotine in the mouse brain

E. P. Broussolle, D. F. Wong, R. J. Fanelli, E. D. London

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49 Scopus citations


[3H]1-Nicotine was used as a receptor ligand in the intact mouse. It was injected i.v., and radioactivity in brain regions was assayed. Nonspecific binding was estimated by pretreatment with unlabelled 1-nicotine. Radioactivity entered the brain rapidly, was heterogeneously distributed, and declined after 5 min. Estimated specific binding was highest in the medial and posterior cortex, midbrain, thalamus/hypothalamus and medulla/pons; intermediate in the cerebellum, caudate/putamen, frontal and frontoparietal cortex; and lowest in the hippocampus and olfactory bulb. Autoradiography showed similar patterns. Coinjection of unlabelled 1-nicotine reduced specific binding so that it approached estimated nonspecific binding. Nicotinic agonists reduced radioactivity in the thalamus/hypothalamus, but nicotinic antagonists were less active. Non-nicotinic drugs did not reduce brain radioactivity. The results suggest that radiolabelled nicotine may be used for in vivo receptor studies despite problems in estimating nonspecific binding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1123-1132
Number of pages10
JournalLife Sciences
Issue number16
StatePublished - 1989


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