, Volume 52, Issue 2, pp 177–180 | Cite as

Specific inhibition of hypothalamic self-stimulation by selective reuptake blockade of either 5-hydroxytryptamine or noradrenaline

  • D. M. Atrens
  • U. Ungerstedt
  • T. Ljungberg
Animal Studies


The effects of two new phthalane-derived bicyclic thymoleptics on hypothalamic self-stimulation were investigated in rats. The drugs, LU 10-171 and LU 5-003 are potent and highly selective reuptake blockers of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) and noradrenaline (NA), respectively. The use of a two-way shuttle-box permitted the differentiation of specific reward modulation effects from the variety of nonspecific performance changes that these drugs may produce. Selective reuptake blockade of either 5HT or NA produced a dose-dependent reduction in reward that could be clearly dissociated from any nonspecific performance decrements. Besides providing direct evidence for a significant role for 5HT in the mediation of hypothalamic self-stimulation, these data show that symply increasing transmitter availability is not a sufficient condition to enhance self-stimulation reward. It is suggested that self-stimulation is dependent on response-contingent transmitter release and that any operation that increases reward-transmitter availability in a response-independent manner should attenuate self-stimulation.

Key words

Self-stimulation Indoleamines Catecholamines 5 Hydroxytryptamine Noradrenaline Reuptake blockade Bicyclic antidepressants Hypothalamus 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. M. Atrens
    • 1
  • U. Ungerstedt
    • 2
  • T. Ljungberg
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyThe University of SydneySydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Department of HistologyKarolinska InstituteStockholm 60Sweden

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