Behavioral evidence for the rapid release of CNS serotonin by PCA and fenfluramine

Michael E. Trulson, Barry L. Jacobs

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239 Scopus citations


Administration of p-chloroamphetamine (PCA) (2.5-10.0 mg/kg) or fenfluramine (FF) (5.0-15.0 mg/kg) to rats induces a behavioral syndrome - consisting of tremor, rigidity, Straub tail, hindlimb abduction, lateral head weaving and reciprocal forepaw treading - which is a reflection of the activity of central serotonin-mediated synapses. The syndrome appears within 3-5 min following i.p. administration of PCA or FF, and the syndrome-inducing effects of PCA and FF are blocked by prior depletion of serotinin with p-chlorophenylalanine. By contrast, the syndrome-inducing effect of 5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine (5-M-DMT), which directly stimulates postsynaptic serotonin receptors, is not changed by prior serotonin depletion. Catecholamine depletion with α-methyl-p-tyrosine produces essentially no change in the syndrome-inducing effects of PCA, FF or 5-M-DMT. These data indicate that the initial effect of PCA or FF administration is the rapid functional release of stored serotonin/.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-154
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1976

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology


  • Behavioral syndrome
  • Fenfluramine
  • Serotonin release
  • p-Chloroamphetamine


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