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Metab Brain Dis. 2013 Mar;28(1):93-105. doi: 10.1007/s11011-012-9375-x. Epub 2013 Jan 18.

Treatment with tianeptine induces antidepressive-like effects and alters the neurotrophin levels, mitochondrial respiratory chain and cycle Krebs enzymes in the brain of maternally deprived adult rats.

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Laboratório de Neurociências, Instituto Nacional de Ciência e Tecnologia Translacional em Medicina, and Núcleo de Excelência em Neurociências Aplicadas de Santa Catarina, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciências da Saúde, Unidade Acadêmica de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade do Extremo Sul Catarinense, Criciúma, SC, Brazil.


Maternally deprived rats were treated with tianeptine (15 mg/kg) once a day for 14 days during their adult phase. Their behavior was then assessed using the forced swimming and open field tests. The BDNF, NGF and energy metabolism were assessed in the rat brain. Deprived rats increased the immobility time, but tianeptine reversed this effect and increased the swimming time; the BDNF levels were decreased in the amygdala of the deprived rats treated with saline and the BDNF levels were decreased in the nucleus accumbens within all groups; the NGF was found to have decreased in the hippocampus, amygdala and nucleus accumbens of the deprived rats; citrate synthase was increased in the hippocampus of non-deprived rats treated with tianeptine and the creatine kinase was decreased in the hippocampus and amygdala of the deprived rats; the mitochondrial complex I and II-III were inhibited, and tianeptine increased the mitochondrial complex II and IV in the hippocampus of the non-deprived rats; the succinate dehydrogenase was increased in the hippocampus of non-deprived rats treated with tianeptine. So, tianeptine showed antidepressant effects conducted on maternally deprived rats, and this can be attributed to its action on the neurochemical pathways related to depression.

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