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Prenatal heroin exposure: Effects on development, acoustic startle response, and locomotion in weanling rats
Zhu J.H.,
Published in Elsevier Inc.
PMID: 10758348
Volume: 22
Issue: 2
Pages: 193 - 203
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of prenatal heroin exposure on the offspring in postnatal behavioral development. Pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were injected daily (s.c.) with 10mg/kg of heroin from gestational day 8 to 20. The control dam received saline injections and the pair-fed dam received saline and was yoked to a weight-matched heroin-treated dam. Litters were culled to eight to ten pups and weighed at postnatal day (PND) 1, 8, 15, and 22. Acoustic prepulse inhibition and habituation were parameters used for evaluating the sensorimotor gating and simple form of learning respectively. Locomotor activity and rearing were assessed using the photobeam activity system. All behavioral tests were performed on the offspring at PND 21 to 23. Results showed that heroin treatment significantly reduced maternal food intake, water consumption, and weight gain. Both heroin-exposed and pair-fed groups showed a marked reduction in birth weight in both male and female pups when compared with controls; however the postnatal weight gain in heroin-exposed pups was significantly lower than the pair-fed group by 3 weeks postnatally, particularly in the female pups. These female pups also showed a significant increase in ambulation and rearing when compared to the pair-fed pups. The habituation rate in both types of behavioral tests was also decreased in these female pups as compared to control and pair-fed groups. The present study indicated that prenatal heroin exposure could result in a marked retardation of postnatal development and learning. These effects are sex related. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Inc.
About the journal
JournalData powered by TypesetNeurotoxicology and Teratology
PublisherData powered by TypesetElsevier Inc.
Open AccessNo