Opioid receptor-mediated suppression of humoral immune response in vivo and in vitro: involvement of κ opioid receptors

Jelena Radulović, Cedo Miljević, Danica Djergović, Vesna Vujić, Jelena Antić, stephan Von Horsten, Branislav D. Janković

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


The selective κ opioid receptor agonist MR 2034 exerted pronounced suppression of plaque-forming cell (PFC) response following intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration in the rat. Pretreatment with preferential κ and μ opioid receptor antagonists MR 2266 and naloxone, respectively, revealed that this effect was mediated mainly by κ, and to a low extent by μ opioid receptors. Intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) administration of quaternary naltrexone (QNtx) moderately attenuated, whereas i.p. given QNtx completely prevented the suppressive effect of MR 2034, suggesting a peripheral mechanism of action, and only minor involvement of brain opioid receptors. MR 2034 markedly decreased the PFC response of spleen cells obtained from in vivo immunized rats, treated in vitro with the opiate. The immunosuppressive action of MR 2034 in vitro was completely and partially blocked by equimolar concentrations of MR 2266 and naloxone, respectively. Antagonists alone produced stimulation of PFC following i.p. administration in the rat, but did not affect PFC response upon in vitro treatment. These results suggest that peripheral k opioid receptors down-regulate primary humoral immune response in the rat, and that this effect may be produced by direct interference with plasma cell activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-62
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Mar 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • Humoral immunity
  • MR 2034
  • MR 2266
  • Naloxone
  • Opioid receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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