Supersensitivity of brain opiate receptor subtypes after chronic naltrexone treatment

Ann Tempel, R. Suzanne Zukin, Eliot L. Gardner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


Chronic administration of the narcotic antagonist naltrexone resulted in a marked increase in brain opiate receptors. Similar changes were observed for putative Mu, Delta, and Kappa opiate receptor subtypes. In contrast, only a modest increase was observed for the putative Sigma receptor. Withdrawal from chronic naltrexone treatment resulted in a decrease from elevated receptor levels to nearly control receptors levels in a period of about 6 days, as revealed by [3H] etorphine binding. These results may shed light on the mechanisms of opiate dependence and withdrawal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1401-1404
Number of pages4
JournalLife Sciences
Issue number12-13
StatePublished - Sep 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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