Clonidine reversal of increased norepinephrine metabolite levels during morphine withdrawal

Jacqueline Crawley, Richard Laverty, Robert H. Roth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


The production of the norepinephrine metabolite 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphethylenglycol (MHPG) in brain regions innvervated by the locus coeruleus was increased during naloxone-precipitated withdrawal from chronic morphine treatment. This MHPG increases was reversed by subcutaneous administration of clonidine. Changes in MHPG levels paralleled the electrophysiological changes found by Aghajanian (1978) in locus coeruleus firing rate with similar treatments, demonstrating the usefulness of MHPG changes as an index of central noradrenergic function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)247-250
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Aug 1 1979
Externally publishedYes


  • Clonidine
  • Dopamine
  • Locus coeruleus
  • Metabolites
  • Morphine
  • Norepinephrine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology


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