Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology

, Volume 298, Issue 2, pp 83–91

Pharmacological properties of tetrahydronorharmane (Tryptoline)


  • H. Rommelspacher
    • Institut für NeuropsychopharmakologieFreie Universität Berlin
  • H. Kauffmann
    • Institut für NeuropsychopharmakologieFreie Universität Berlin
  • C. Heyck Cohnitz
    • Institut für NeuropsychopharmakologieFreie Universität Berlin
  • H. Coper
    • Institut für NeuropsychopharmakologieFreie Universität Berlin

DOI: 10.1007/BF00508615

Cite this article as:
Rommelspacher, H., Kauffmann, H., Cohnitz, C.H. et al. Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Arch. Pharmacol. (1977) 298: 83. doi:10.1007/BF00508615


Earlier in vitro experiments led to the hypothesis that tetrahydronorharmane (THN) modulates the effect of serotonin. This assumption has now been tested in vivo on rats. In addition dopaminergic mechanisms were investigated. Findings in favour of a serotonergic action of THN were:

  1. 1.

    The analgesic effect of THN which was antagonized by 9,10-dihydro, 10-(1-methyl-4-piperidyliden)-9-anthrol, a serotonin-receptor antagonist

  2. 2.

    the hypothermic effect of THN

  3. 3.

    the appetite-reducing effect of long-term treatment with THN.


An antidopaminergic effect of THN was suggested by:

  1. 1.

    The motility-reducing effect of THN

  2. 2.

    the antagonistic effect against apomorphine-induced licking movements of acute and chronic treatment with THN and the development of supersensitivity to apomorphine one week after withdrawal of THN.

  3. 3.

    the antagonistic effect of THN against the contralateral turning response to apomorphine in animals with unilateral medial forebrain bundle lesions.


The antidopaminergic effects were elicited by lower doses of THN than the stimulation of serotonergic mechanisms.

The observed prolongation of hexobarbital sleeping time might be an unspecific effect. A reduction of the elimination rate of the barbiturate was not detected.

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© Springer-Verlag 1977