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Chronic administration of clomipramine prevents the increase in serotonin and noradrenaline induced by chronic stress

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The effects of chronic clomipramine administration (15 mg/kg daily for 23 days) on changes in serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT), 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) and noradrenaline (NA) induced by chronic stress have been studied in the rat brain. Chronic stress increased 5-HT in midbrain, pons and hippocampus, 5-HIAA in frontal cortex, midbrain, pons and hippocampus, and NA in midbrain and striatum. Chronic clomipramine significantly decreased the levels of 5-HT in most regions. In hypothalamus, hippocampus and perhaps in frontal cortex this effect possibly reflects decreased synthesis caused by an action on presynaptic 5-HT receptors. However, in midbrain, pons and striatum decreased 5-HT could not be attributed to a decrease in its synthesis since 5-HIAA also increased. This drug treatment also reduced NA in all regions except the striatum. Nevertheless, conclusions on NA synthesis or turnover cannot be drawn since only NA levels were measured. When administered concurrently, chronic clomipramine prevented the increases in 5-HT, 5-HIAA and NA produced by chronic stress. These results are in good accordance with previous findings showing that chronic antidepressant treatment also prevented behavioural disturbances induced by chronic stress.

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Correspondence to Albert Adell.

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Adell, A., García-Marquez, C., Armario, A. et al. Chronic administration of clomipramine prevents the increase in serotonin and noradrenaline induced by chronic stress. Psychopharmacology 99, 22–26 (1989). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00634447

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Key words

  • Serotonin
  • Noradrenaline
  • Chronic stress
  • Chronic clomipramine