, Volume 64, Issue 3, pp 255–260 | Cite as

Maturational changes related to dopamine in the effects of d-amphetamine, cocaine, nicotine, and strychnine on seizure susceptibility

  • Charles A. Greer
  • Herbert P. Alpern
Original Investigations


The effects of four neural excitants (d-amphetamine, cocaine, nicotine, and strychnine) on myoclonic and clonic seizure susceptibility were investigated in two age groups (30 and 120 days) of short-sleep mice. Amphetamine and cocaine decreased susceptibility to myoclonus in young mice and increased susceptibility in mature mice. These effects were attenuated by pretreatment with haloperidol, indicating mediation by a dopaminergic system. Amphetamine did not alter clonic susceptibility in either age group of mice, whereas cocaine affected clonic susceptibility and myoclonus. These effects were not attenuated by haloperidol, indicating mediation by systems other than dopamine. Nicotine decreased susceptibility to myoclonus and increased susceptibility to clonus, whereas strychnine increased susceptibility to both types of seizure. Haloperidol, however, failed to alter any of these effects. These results are consistent with our previous work which suggests that a dopaminergic mechanism in these mice undergoes marked developmental changes between 30 and 120 days of age.

Key words

d-Amphetamine Cocaine Nicotine Strychnine Seizure susceptibility Dopamine Development 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles A. Greer
    • 1
    • 2
  • Herbert P. Alpern
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ColoradoBoulderU.S.A.
  2. 2.Institute for Behavioral GeneticsUniversity of ColoradoBoulderU.S.A.

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