The effects of administration of the non-benzodiazepine anxiolytic buspirone on the spontaneous and sensory evoked single unit activity of serotonergic (5-HT) neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus and noradrenergic (NE) neurons in the locus coeruleus were examined in freely moving cats. Buspirone (1.0 mg/kg i.p.) strongly suppressed both the spontaneous and evoked activity of 5-HT dorsal raphe nucleus neurons. The spontaneous activity of NE neurons in the locus coeruleus was non-significantly increased by drug administration, while the evoked response was unaffected. These effects occurred during a period of mild behavioral activation. It is suggested that the anxiolytic effects of buspirone administration are not achieved through an action of NE neurons, but may be mediated in part by actions of 5-HT neurons in the dorsal raphe.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Anxiolytic drugs