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Eur J Pharmacol. 1994 Aug 11;261(1-2):59-64.

Alpha 1-adrenoceptor antagonists differentially control serotonin release in the hippocampus and striatum: a microdialysis study.

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Synthelabo Recherche (L.E.R.S.), Biology Department, Bagneux, France.


Using the in vivo microdialysis technique, we have studied the effect of the systemic administration of several alpha 1-adrenoceptor antagonists on the extracellular levels of serotonin (5-HT) in the rat hippocampus. Prazosin, and to a lesser extent, terazosin, decreased these levels by 50-65% for 0.03-0.4 mg/kg, i.v. and by 30-40% for 0.1-0.4 mg/kg, i.v., respectively. In contrast, alfuzosin, an alpha 1-adrenoceptor antagonist with poor brain penetration, did not significantly affect these levels even at the high dose of 0.4 mg/kg, i.v. When perfused into the hippocampus through the dialysis probe, prazosin (1-10 microM) induced a more limited (20-30%) and delayed decrease in 5-HT outflow. These results support the existence of a central noradrenergic facilitatory influence, mediated by alpha 1-adrenoceptors, on serotonergic neurons projecting to the hippocampus. In the striatum prazosin (0.4 mg/kg, i.v.) decreased 5-HT levels to a smaller extent (-35%) than in the hippocampus (-65%), suggesting the existence of differences in the degree of noradrenergic influence on median and dorsal raphé nuclei, which preferentially project to the hippocampus and striatum, respectively.

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