Psychopharmacology

, Volume 148, Issue 3, pp 322–324

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

  • L. Reneman
  • J. Booij
  • B. Schmand
  • W. van den Brink
  • B. Gunning
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

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Reneman
    • 1
  • J. Booij
    • 1
  • B. Schmand
    • 2
  • W. van den Brink
    • 3
  • B. Gunning
    • 4
  1. 1.Graduate School of Neurosciences, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The NetherlandsNL
  2. 2.Department of Neurology, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The NetherlandsNL
  3. 3.Amsterdam Institute for Addiction Research and Department of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, 1105 BC Amsterdam, The NetherlandsNL
  4. 4.Department of Child-Adolescent Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The NetherlandsNL
  5. 5.Department of Nuclear Medicine, F2N, Academic Medical Center, Meibergdreef 9, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands e-mail: l.reneman@amc.uva.nl, Fax: +31-20-6976508NL