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Current HIV Research


ISSN (Print): 1570-162X
ISSN (Online): 1873-4251

Opiate Addiction Therapies and HIV-1 Tat: Interactive Effects on Glial [Ca2+]i, Oxyradical and Neuroinflammatory Chemokine Production and Correlative Neurotoxicity

Author(s): Sylvia Fitting, Shiping Zou, Nazira El-Hage, Masami Suzuki, Jason J. Paris, Christina J. Schier, Jose W. Rodriguez, Myosotys Rodriguez, Pamela E. Knapp and Kurt F. Hauser

Volume 12, Issue 6, 2014

Page: [424 - 434] Pages: 11

DOI: 10.2174/1570162X1206150311161147

open access plus


Few preclinical studies have compared the relative therapeutic efficacy of medications used to treat opiate addiction in relation to neuroAIDS. Here we compare the ability of methadone and buprenorphine, and the prototypic opiate morphine, to potentiate the neurotoxic and proinflammatory ([Ca2+]i, ROS, H2O2, chemokines) effects of HIV-1 Tat in neuronal and/or mixedglial co-cultures. Repeated observations of neurons during 48 h exposure to combinations of Tat, equimolar concentrations (500 nM) of morphine, methadone, or buprenorphine exacerbated neurotoxicity significantly above levels seen with Tat alone. Buprenorphine alone displayed marked neurotoxicity at 500 nM, prompting additional studies of its neurotoxic effects at 5 nM and 50 nM concentrations ± Tat. In combination with Tat, buprenorphine displayed paradoxical, concentrationdependent, neurotoxic and neuroprotective actions. Buprenorphine neurotoxicity coincided with marked elevations in [Ca2+]i, but not increases in glial ROS or chemokine release. Tat by itself elevated the production of CCL5/RANTES, CCL4/MIP-1β, and CCL2/MCP-1. Methadone and buprenorphine alone had no effect, but methadone interacted with Tat to further increase production of CCL5/RANTES. In combination with Tat, all drugs significantly increased glial [Ca2+]i, but ROS was only significantly increased by co-exposure with morphine. Taken together, the increases in glial [Ca2+]i, ROS, and neuroinflammatory chemokines were not especially accurate predictors of neurotoxicity. Despite similarities, opiates displayed differences in their neurotoxic and neuroinflammatory interactions with Tat. Buprenorphine, in particular, was partially neuroprotective at a low concentration, which may result from its unique pharmacological profile at multiple opioid receptors. Overall, the results reveal differences among addiction medications that may impact neuroAIDS.

Keywords: Calcium, chemokines, buprenorphine, methadone, morphine, neuro-acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (neuroAIDS), opioid drug abuse, oxidative stress.

Graphical Abstract

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