Articles written in Journal of Biosciences
Volume 29 Issue 1 March 2004 pp 51-56
Though morphine remains the most powerful drug for treating pain, its effectiveness is limited by the development of tolerance and dependence. The mechanism underlying development of tolerance to morphine is still poorly understood. One of the factors could be an alteration in the number of Μ-receptors within specific parts of the nervous system. However, reports on changes in the Μ-opioid receptor density in the spinal cord after chronic morphine administration are conflicting. Most of the studies have used subcutaneously implanted morphine pellets to produce tolerance. However, it does not simulate clinical conditions, where it is more common to administer morphine at intervals, either by injections or orally. In the present study, rats were made tolerant to morphine by injecting increasing doses of morphine (10-50 mg/kg, subcutaneously) for five days.