Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2007 Mar-Apr;29(2):288-300. Epub 2006 Oct 20.

A developmental comparison of the neurobehavioral effects of ecstasy (MDMA).

Author information

Neuroscience and Behavior Program, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003-7710, USA.


The entactogen +/-3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA or ecstasy) is a popular recreational drug among college, high school, and, occasionally, middle school students. Preclinical research examining the acute and long-term effects of MDMA has predominately been conducted in reproductively mature subjects but there has been increasing interest in adolescent and in utero exposure. This review examines the acute and long-term responses to MDMA during perinatal, adolescent, and adult periods. The ability of MDMA to alter core body temperature emerges gradually during ontogeny while a reduction in body weight is evident at all ages. Learning and working-memory are also altered independent of the developmental stage of exposure. Current evidence suggests adults are more sensitive to the long-term serotonin depletions following MDMA but younger ages also exhibit substantial and rapid neuroplasticity. Sexually dimorphic MDMA responses have been identified for the acute hyperthermic and motoric effects of MDMA with pubescent males being especially susceptible. Several physiological, behavioral, and neurochemical MDMA issues requiring further study are also outlined.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center