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Psychopharmacology

, Volume 51, Issue 1, pp 53–57 | Cite as

Alterations of mouse adrenal medullary catecholamines and enzymes in response to attack: Effect of pre- and post-treatment with phenobarbital

  • N. B. Thoa
  • Y. Tizabi
  • I. J. Kopin
  • G. D. Maengwyn-Davies
Animal Studies

Abstract

Group-housed male C57BR/cdJ mice (victims) were exposed to attack for 10 min daily for up to 14 days by male Swiss-Webster mice, made aggressive by prolonged isolation. Their adrenal glands were analyzed for tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and phenylethanolamine-N-methyltransferase (PNMT) activities and for norepinephrine (NE) and epinephrine (EPI) concentrations. TH was increased to 41% above control after two exposures and remained elevated through 14 exposures to attack. PNMT was increased to 29% above control after 2 days and increased further to 50% above control after 14 days of attack. Both NE and EPI increased to 88% and 51% above control, respectively, after 7 days. In victim mice recuperating after 1 week of daily stress, EPI levels and PNMT activities were back to normal after 4 days whereas NE levels and TH activities returned to normal only after 1 week. Phenobarbital (40 mg/kg, i.m.) was effective in preventing the biochemical changes when given 2 h prior to each daily attack but was ineffective when given immediately after each daily stress.

Key words

Attack stress Aggressor mice Victim mice Adrenal medullary enzymes Adrenal catecholamines Phenobarbital 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. B. Thoa
    • 1
  • Y. Tizabi
    • 1
  • I. J. Kopin
    • 1
  • G. D. Maengwyn-Davies
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Pharmacology and Department of Physiology and BiophysicsGeorgetown University, Schools of Medicine and DentistryWashington, D.C.U.S.A.

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