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Brain research

Clonidine and guanfacine attenuate phencyclidine-induced dopamine overflow in rat prefrontal cortex: mediating influence of the alpha-2A adrenoceptor subtype.


PMID 18977208

Abstract

N-methyl-D-aspartic acid/glutamate receptor antagonists induce psychotomimetic effects in humans and animals, and much research has focused on the neurochemical and network-level effects that mediate those behavioral changes. For example, a reduction in NMDA-dependent glutamatergic transmission triggers increased release of the monoamine transmitters, and some of these changes are implicated in the cognitive, behavioral and neuroanatomical effects of phencyclidine (PCP). Alpha-2 adrenoceptor agonists (e.g., clonidine) are effective at preventing many of the behavioral, neurochemical and anatomical effects of NMDA antagonists. Evidence has indicated that a key mechanism of the clonidine-induced reversal of the effects of NMDA antagonists is an attenuation of enhanced dopamine release. We have pursued these findings by investigating the effects of alpha-2 agonists on PCP-evoked dopamine efflux in the prefrontal cortex of freely moving rats. Clonidine (0.003-0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) dose-dependently attenuated the ability of PCP (2.5 mg/kg, i.p.) to increase cortical dopamine output. The effects of clonidine were prevented by the alpha-2A subtype selective antagonist BRL-44408 (1 mg/kg, i.p.). Guanfacine, which is an alpha-2 agonist with a higher affinity for the 2A, compared with 2B or 2C, subtypes, also blocked the ability of PCP to increase dopamine efflux in the prefrontal cortex. These data indicate that alpha-2A agonists are effective at counteracting the hyperdopaminergic state induced by PCP and may play a role in their neurobehavioral effects in this putative animal model for schizophrenia.

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B4559
BRL 44408 maleate salt, ≥98% (HPLC)
C17H21N3O4