Psychopharmacology

, Volume 148, Issue 3, pp 322–324

Memory disturbances in ”Ecstasy” users are correlated with an altered brain serotonin neurotransmission

Authors

  • L. Reneman
    • Graduate School of Neurosciences, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • J. Booij
    • Graduate School of Neurosciences, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • B. Schmand
    • Department of Neurology, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • W. van den Brink
    • Amsterdam Institute for Addiction Research and Department of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, 1105 BC Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • B. Gunning
    • Department of Child-Adolescent Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Rapid Communication

DOI: 10.1007/s002130050057

Cite this article as:
Reneman, L., Booij, J., Schmand, B. et al. Psychopharmacology (2000) 148: 322. doi:10.1007/s002130050057

Abstract 

Rationale: Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) is known to damage brain pre-synaptic serotonin (5-HT) neurons. Since loss of 5-HT neurons has been implicated in memory loss, it is important to establish whether MDMA use may produce changes in postsynaptic 5-HT receptors and memory function in humans. Objectives: To investigate whether MDMA use leads to compensative alterations in post-synaptic 5-HT2A receptors and whether there is a relation with memory disturbances. Methods: Brain cortical 5-HT2A receptor densities were studied with [123I]-5-I-R91150 SPECT in five abstinent MDMA users and nine healthy controls. Memory performance was assessed using RAVLT. Results: [123I]-5-I-R91150 binding ratios were significantly higher in the occipital cortex of MDMA users than in controls, indicating up-regulation. Mean cortical 5-HT2A receptor binding correlated positively with RAVLT-recall in MDMA users. Conclusion: Our preliminary results may indicate altered 5-HT neuronal function with correlated memory impairment in abstinent MDMA users.

Key words MDMAEcstasySPECT5-HT2 receptorMemory

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000