Effects of supplemental choline on extracellular acetylcholine in the nucleus accumbens during normal behavior and pharmacological acetylcholine depletion

P. V. Rada, Gregory Mark, B. G. Hoebel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations


Brain microdialysis was used to determine whether systemic or local application of choline would modify the extracellular concentration of acetylcholine (ACh) in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) of freely moving rats. Supplemental choline given intraperitoneally or into the NAc of normal rats did not increase extracellular ACh. When local ACh interneurons in the NAc were treated pharmacologically to deplete the intracellular stores of ACh, then systemic choline (80 mg/kg) was an effective treatment. Specifically, 1) blockade of the high-affinity choline transporter with hemicholinium-3 (HC- 3) to reduce ACh synthesis caused a decrease in extracellular ACh, but choline supplementation restored ACh toward its normal level in the NAc. 2) Local bicuculline treatment released ACh to the point of depletion, but systemic choline or locally infused choline helped maintain normal ACh levels. These results suggest that choline supplementation might be useful in preventing depletion of ACh in the nucleus accumbens during pathological conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-218
Number of pages8
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes



  • Acetylcholine
  • Bicuculline
  • Choline
  • Hemicholinium
  • Microdialysis
  • Precursor loading
  • Rats

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology

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