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Brain Res. 1990 Jan 22;507(2):208-15.

Autoradiographic analysis of [3H]ketanserin binding in the human brain postmortem: effect of suicide.

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  • 1Department of Neurobiology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.


In vitro quantitative autoradiography of 5-HT2 receptors, using [3H]ketanserin as a ligand, was performed on 24 human brains postmortem. Twelve brains were donated by suicide victims and 12 by matched controls. We found a characteristic decline in 5-HT2 receptors with age in several brain regions of the control group. This age dependence of ketanserin binding was not present in some of these brain regions of the suicide group. We also found a significant but anatomically selective reduction in the density of ketanserin binding sites in the young suicide group, compared to age-matched controls. This reduction was evident in portions of the prefrontal cortex. Homogenate binding assays on prefrontal cortex samples from a large group of suicides (n = 20) and controls (n = 23) showed that the difference in age dependence of ketanserin binding and the reduced binding in the young suicide group were explained by differences in Bmax values. No differences were observed in Kd. Sex, presence of alcohol and time from death to autopsy did not affect ketanserin binding, in our sample, as measured by either autoradiography or homogenate binding assay.

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