Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Improved clinical antidepressant efficacy may result if the acute inhibition of 5-HT cell firing induced by antidepressants is prevented. Here we examined whether inhibition of 5-HT cell firing by non-selective 5-HT uptake inhibiting antidepressant drugs is reversed by a selective 5-HT1A receptor antagonist. In addition, we examined whether concomitant blockade of NA uptake offsets the inhibition of 5-HT cell firing resulting from 5-HT uptake blockade. Antidepressants which block 5-HT uptake (paroxetine, clomipramine, amitriptyline, venlafaxine), all caused dose-dependent and complete inhibition of 5-HT cell firing. Desipramine, a selective NA uptake blocker, caused a slight reduction in firing. The selective 5-HT1A receptor antagonist, WAY 100635, reversed the inhibition of 5-HT cell firing induced by clomipramine, amitriptyline, venlafaxine, and paroxetine, but not that induced by the alpha 1 adrenoceptor antagonist, prazosin. Desipramine, at a dose which increased extracellular NA in the DRN, reversed the effect of prazosin but did not alter the ability of paroxetine to inhibit 5-HT cell firing. Our data indicate that antidepressant drugs with 5-HT uptake blocking properties inhibit 5-HT cell firing via activation of 5-HT1A autoreceptors, and do so irrespective of their effects on NA uptake. These data are discussed in relation to the application of 5-HT1A receptor antagonists to enhance the clinical efficacy of antidepressant drugs.


Journal article


Psychopharmacology (Berl)

Publication Date





261 - 268


8-Hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin, Action Potentials, Amitriptyline, Animals, Clomipramine, Cyclohexanols, Male, Neurons, Paroxetine, Piperazines, Pyridines, Raphe Nuclei, Rats, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Serotonin, Serotonin Antagonists, Serotonin Receptor Agonists, Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors, Venlafaxine Hydrochloride