Authors: D. C. S. Roberts, Rachel Phelan, L. Mark Hodges, Melinda M. Hodges, Barbara Bennett, Steve Childers, Huw Davies
1999, 144, 4, 389-397
A novel scheme for the synthesis of cocaine analogs from vinylcarbenoid precursors has made available compounds that have a diverse range of affinities for the DA and 5-HT transporters. These compounds were used to explore the relationship between their biochemical properties and their reinforcing effects. Objectives: The objective was to assess the reinforcing efficacy of selected cocaine analogs and compare the results with their selectivity in binding to DA and 5-HT transporters. Methods: Rats were prepared with chronically indwelling intravenous cannulae and trained to self-administer cocaine on a progressive ratio (PR) schedule. A range of doses of seven cocaine analogs were substituted for cocaine in separate groups of animals. Results: The results demonstrate a wide range of reinforcing efficacies and potencies among the seven selected drugs. Four tropane analogs (WF-11, WF-23, WF-24, WF-55) were found to support self-administration behavior on a PR schedule while three did not (WF-31, WF-54 and WF-60). The DA/5-HT selectivity ratio was found to be a better predictor of self-administration behavior than affinity at the DA transporter alone. Conclusion: These data suggest that drugs with a higher affinity for the DA versus the 5-HT transporter are more likely to be self-administered.