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J Psychopharmacol. 2013 Nov;27(11):1032-43. doi: 10.1177/0269881113503506. Epub 2013 Sep 17.

Prevention and reversal of ketamine-induced schizophrenia related behavior by minocycline in mice: Possible involvement of antioxidant and nitrergic pathways.

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  • 11Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Federal University of Ceará, Fortaleza, Brazil.


It has been hypothesized that oxidative imbalance and alterations in nitrergic signaling play a role in the neurobiology of schizophrenia. Preliminary evidence suggests that adjunctive minocycline treatment is efficacious for cognitive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia. This study investigated the effects of minocycline in the prevention and reversal of ketamine-induced schizophrenia-like behaviors in mice. In the reversal protocol, animals received ketamine (20 mg/kg per day intraperitoneally or saline for 14 days, and minocycline (25 or 50 mg/kg daily), risperidone or vehicle treatment from days 8 to 14. In the prevention protocol, mice were pretreated with minocycline, risperidone or vehicle prior to ketamine. Behaviors related to positive (locomotor activity and prepulse inhibition of startle), negative (social interaction) and cognitive (Y maze) symptoms of schizophrenia were also assessed. Glutathione (GSH), thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) and nitrite levels were measured in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus and striatum. Minocycline and risperidone prevented and reversed ketamine-induced alterations in behavioral paradigms, oxidative markers (i.e. ketamine-induced decrease and increase in GSH levels and TBARS content, respectively) as well as nitrite levels in the striatum. These data provide a rationale for evaluating minocycline as a novel psychotropic agent and suggest that its mechanism of action includes antioxidant and nitrergic systems.


Minocycline; cognition; ketamine-induced model; prepulse inhibition; schizophrenia; social interaction

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