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J Neurochem. 1997 Aug;69(2):815-22.

Effects of milnacipran and pindolol on extracellular noradrenaline and serotonin levels in guinea pig hypothalamus.

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  • 1Pierre Fabre Research Center, Castres, France.


Milnacipran, a dual noradrenaline (NA) and serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) uptake inhibitor, increased extracellular levels of NA and 5-HT in hypothalamus of freely moving guinea pigs as measured by microdialysis. The basal levels of both monoamines, which were tetrodotoxin sensitive, were increased in a dose-dependent manner and to a similar extent after the intraperitoneal administration of milnacipran (10 and 40 mg/ kg i.p.). Levels of the NA metabolite 4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenylglycol (MHPG) were decreased by milnacipran at 10 and 40 mg/kg i.p., whereas those of the 5-HT metabolite 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) showed no effect. Subcutaneous injection of 5-HT1A and beta-adrenergic receptor antagonist (-)-pindolol alone, at 10 mg/kg, had no effect on the extracellular levels of NA or 5-HT. The concomitant administration of (-)-pindolol (10 mg/kg s.c.) with milnacipran (10 mg/kg i.p.) increased severalfold the effect of milnacipran on the extracellular levels of NA and 5-HT. These results indicate that milnacipran, by blocking the uptake of NA and 5-HT, increases virtually equipotently the extracellular levels of NA and 5-HT, confirming previous in vitro studies. In addition, the antagonism of 5-HT1A autoreceptors by (-)-pindolol potentiates the action of milnacipran on both NA and 5-HT systems, without modifying the ratio of these activities.

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