Role of dopamine D1 and D2 receptors in the nucleus accumbens in mediating reward

Satoshi Ikemoto, Bradley S. Glazier, James M. Murphy, William J. McBride

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

193 Scopus citations


The objectives of this study were to examine the involvement of D1 and D2 receptors within the nucleus accumbens (ACB) in mediating reinforcement. The intracranial self-administration (ICSA) of D1 and D2 agonists was used to determine whether activating D1 and/or D2 receptors within the ACB of Wistar rats is reinforcing. At concentrations of 0.25, 0.50, and 1.0 mM (25, 50, and 100 pmol/100 nl of infusion), neither the D1 agonist R(+)-1-phenyl- 2,3,4,5-tetrahydro-1H-3-benzazepine-7,8-diol [SKF 38393 (SKF)] hydrochloride nor the D2 agonist (-)-quinpirole (Quin) hydrochloride was self-administered into the shell region of the ACB. On the other hand, equimolar mixtures of SKF and Quin (SKF+Quin), at concentrations of 0.25, 0.50, and 1.0 mM each, were significantly self-infused into the ACB shell. The core region of the ACB did not support the ICSA of SKF+Quin at any of these concentrations. Rats increased lever pressing when the response requirement was increased from a fixed ratio 1 (FR1) to FR3, and they responded significantly more on the infusion lever than they did on the control lever. Coadministration of either 0.50 mM R(+)-7-chloro-8-hydroxy-3-methyl-1-phenyl-2,3,4,5-tetrahydro-1H-3- benzazepine (SCH 23390) hydrochloride, a D1 antagonist, or 0.50 mM S(-)- sulpiride, a D2 antagonist, completely abolished the ICSA of the mixture of SKF+Quin (each at 0.50 mM) into the ACB shell. The present results suggest that concurrent activation of D1- and D2-type receptors in the shell of the ACB had a cooperative effect on DA-mediated reward processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8580-8587
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number21
StatePublished - 1997


  • Dopamine D receptor
  • Dopamine D receptor
  • Intracranial self-administration
  • Nucleus accumbens
  • Quinpirole
  • Reinforcement
  • Reward
  • SKF 38393

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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