Journal of Pharmacy And Bioallied Sciences
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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 43-47

Thermal latency studies in opiate-treated mice

1 Department of Neurological Surgery, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
2 Departments of Pathology, Medicine, Epidemiology and Public Health, School of Medicine, The Program of Comparative Medicine, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Correspondence Address:
Michael Guarnieri
Department of Neurological Surgery, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
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Source of Support: Funding for the present study was supplied by the Maryland Industrial Partnership, a State of Maryland fund to promote the development of products and processes through industry/university research partnerships. M. Guarnieri received additional funding from Bamvet, Inc., and holds a significant financial interest in Bamvet. Angela She and Nikita Robbins provided technical assistance. Gina Wilkerson provided manuscript editing, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-7406.124316

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Background: The change in the reaction time of a tail or paw exposed to a thermal stimulus is a measure of nociceptive activity in laboratory animals. Tail-flick and plantar thermal sensitivity (Hargreaves) tests are non-invasive, minimize stress, and can be used to screen animals for phenotype and drug activity. Objective: Hargreaves testing has been widely used in rats. We investigated its use to measure the activity of opiate analgesia in mice. Methods: Mice were used in thermal stimulus studies at 1-5 hours and 1-5 days to test acute and extended release preparations of buprenorphine. Results: Hargreaves testing had limited value at 1-5 hours because mice can have an obtunded response to opiate therapy. Tail-flick studies with restrained mice are not affected by the initial locomotor stimulation. Discussion: The present report describes a simple restraint system for mice. The utility of the system is demonstrated by examining the efficacy of acute and extended release buprenorphine injections in Balb/c and Swiss mice. Conclusion: Standardized tail-flick testing provides a sensitive robust method to monitor opiate activity in mice.

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