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Curr Drug Abuse Rev. 2010 Sep;3(3):156-62.

Could sigma receptor ligands be a treatment for methamphetamine addiction?

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Department of Psychological Sciences and Bond Life Sciences Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA.


Methamphetamine's effects are generally considered to be mediated via monoamine transporters; however, it has comparable affinity for sigma receptors. Sigma receptors influence the downstream dopamine systems that are targeted by methamphetamine treatment. Research investigating the effect of sigma receptor agonists on methamphetamine-associated neurochemical and behavioral properties remains controversial; however, the general trend indicates an enhancement of stimulant effects. In contrast, sigma receptor antagonists attenuate methamphetamine-induced neurotoxic and behavioral properties. Together, these studies highlight an important role for sigma receptors in methamphetamine's addictive properties and the consequences of methamphetamine intoxication. Additional research is necessary to elucidate the precise mechanisms underlying their involvement and their role as a potential target for anti-methamphetamine pharmacotherapies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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