Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

It is proposed that 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA; Ecstasy) is more toxic to 5-HT neurones projecting from the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) than to those from the median raphe nucleus (MRN). Since increased 5-HT release has been associated with MDMA-induced neurotoxicity, MDMA may have a DRN-selective 5-HT releasing effect. Here we have compared the effects of acute MDMA on DRN and MRN 5-HT pathways using in vivo electrophysiological and neurochemical techniques. MDMA inhibited the firing of 5-HT neurones in both the DRN and the MRN, and did so with similar potency (ED50 values, 0.589 +/- 0.151 (8) and 0.588 +/- 0.207 (6) mg/kg i.v., respectively). In both nuclei this inhibitory effect was reversed by the selective 5-HT1A receptor antagonist, WAY 100635 (0.1 mg/kg i.v.). Microdialysis measurements were made in the frontal cortex and dorsal hippocampus, regions which receive a DRN- and an MRN-selective 5-HT innervation, respectively. A dose of 1 mg/kg i.v. MDMA increased extracellular 5-HT 3-fold in both the frontal cortex and dorsal hippocampus. A higher dose (3 mg/kg i.v.) increased 5-HT levels 8-fold in both regions. Overall, our data suggest that MDMA releases 5-HT from the cell body and terminal regions of both DRN and MRN 5-HT pathways, and does so in a qualitatively and quantitatively similar fashion. We conclude that any DRN-selectivity in the neurotoxic effects of MDMA is not due to a DRN-selective, acute 5-HT releasing action of the drug.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Neuropharmacology

Publication Date

11/1997

Volume

36

Pages

1697 - 1703

Keywords

Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid, Electric Stimulation, Electrochemistry, Electrophysiology, Hippocampus, Microdialysis, N-Methyl-3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine, Neurons, Piperazines, Prefrontal Cortex, Pyridines, Raphe Nuclei, Serotonin, Serotonin Agents, Serotonin Antagonists, Stereotaxic Techniques