Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
Br J Psychiatry. 2008 Oct;193(4):289-96. doi: 10.1192/bjp.bp.106.035089.

Neurotoxic effects of ecstasy on the thalamus.

Author information

  • 1Department of Radiology, University of Amsterdam, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. m.m.dewin@amc.uva.nl

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Neurotoxic effects of ecstasy have been reported, although it remains unclear whether effects can be attributed to ecstasy, other recreational drugs or a combination of these.

AIMS:

To assess specific/independent neurotoxic effects of heavy ecstasy use and contributions of amphetamine, cocaine and cannabis as part of The Netherlands XTC Toxicity (NeXT) study.

METHOD:

Effects of ecstasy and other substances were assessed with (1)H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy, diffusion tensor imaging, perfusion weighted imaging and [(123)I]2beta-carbomethoxy-3beta-(4-iodophenyl)-tropane ([(123)I]beta-CIT) single photon emission computed tomography (serotonin transporters) in a sample (n=71) with broad variation in drug use, using multiple regression analyses.

RESULTS:

Ecstasy showed specific effects in the thalamus with decreased [(123)I]beta-CIT binding, suggesting serotonergic axonal damage; decreased fractional anisotropy, suggesting axonal loss; and increased cerebral blood volume probably caused by serotonin depletion. Ecstasy had no effect on brain metabolites and apparent diffusion coefficients.

CONCLUSIONS:

Converging evidence was found for a specific toxic effect of ecstasy on serotonergic axons in the thalamus.

PMID:
18827290
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk