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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The kappa opioid receptor and food intake.

Many studies have suggested a role of opioid receptors in the modulation of food intake. Several distinct classes of opioid receptors have been postulated. In an attempt to establish which opioid receptor(s) modulate feeding we studied the effect of the kappa agonist, bremazocine, on feeding and compared its effects to the preferential mu agonist, morphine, and the mixed kappa-sigma agonist, butorphanol and the kappa agonist, ethylketocyclazocine. Bremazocine increased feeding to the same extent as morphine and was less potent than the mixed agonist/antagonists. The bremazocine effect demonstrated a bell-shaped dose response curve. Daily administration of bremazocine or morphine enhances the effect on increasing food intake. However, this effect of daily injections on enhancing food intake is not present when animals receiving morphine are crossed over to bremazocine and vice versa. The bremazocine effect is enhanced by diprenorphine and not inhibited by naloxone. Low doses of the dopamine antagonist, haloperidol, enhance the bremazocine effect and higher doses inhibit it. Finally, using another kappa agonist, tifluadom, we showed that the effect on food intake is stereospecific. Our studies provided further evidence for a role for the kappa opioid receptor in feeding. However, they also suggest that more than one subpopulation of opioid receptors is involved in feeding modulation.[1]


  1. The kappa opioid receptor and food intake. Morley, J.E., Levine, A.S., Kneip, J., Grace, M., Zeugner, H., Shearman, G.T. Eur. J. Pharmacol. (1985) [Pubmed]
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