Journal of neuroimmunology

Nuclear receptor activation and interaction with morphine.

PMID 15579281


Nervous system disease in HIV infection is associated with toxic damage induced by effects from proinflammatory responses and oxidative stress, and such effects may be more prominent among opioid abusers. In these studies, the effects of activating retinoid receptor (retinoic acid receptor (RAR) and retinoid X receptor (RXR)) and peroxisome proliferator activated receptor (PPAR) gamma, which belong to the steroid-lipid nuclear receptor family, on tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha production and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) gene expression by stimulated U937 and SVG cells, respectively, were examined. Also studied were the effects of morphine on these responses. These studies showed that, in stimulated cells, the observed responses were suppressed by activation of the nuclear receptors as compared to non-stimulated control cells. Moreover, in phytohemagglutinin (PHA)-stimulated U937 cells, morphine reversed the TNF-alpha suppression that was induced by LG101305 and ciglitazone. Preliminary data in SVG cells suggest a tendency for morphine to have a similar effect on LG101305-exposed SVG cells stimulated with a combination of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon-gamma, whereas this effect was not induced when these cells were incubated with ciglitazone. Therefore, specific nuclear receptor activation may be potentially beneficial in the treatment of neurological disease associated with HIV infection and may show specific interactions with opioids. The mechanisms that underlie these effects require further study.