The role of 5-HT3 receptors in the additive anticonvulsant effects of citalopram and morphine on pentylenetetrazole-induced clonic seizures in mice

Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
Epilepsy & Behavior (Impact Factor: 2.26). 06/2011; 21(2):122-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2011.03.010
Source: PubMed


Citalopram, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), is frequently used in the treatment of major depressive disorders. In addition to its antidepressant features, citalopram shows some anticonvulsive properties at lower doses, whereas higher doses, ingested in cases of suicide, have been associated with seizures. Moreover, some reports support the enhancing effect of morphine on different responses of SSRIs such as analgesic and anticonvulsant properties. Although the exact mechanisms of these additive effects are not yet fully understood, 5-HT(3) receptor has recently been shown to play an important role in the central effects of SSRIs and morphine. In this regard, we used a model of clonic seizures induced by pentylenetetrazole (PTZ) in male NMRI mice to investigate whether morphine and citalopram exhibit additive anticonvulsant effects and, if so, whether this effect is mediated through modulation of 5-HT(3) receptors. In our study, citalopram at lower doses (0.5 and 1 mg/kg, ip) significantly increased the seizure threshold (P<0.01) and at a higher dose (50 mg/kg) had proconvulsive effects. Moreover, morphine at low and noneffective doses had additive effects on the anticonvulsive properties of citalopram. This additive effect was prevented by pretreatment with low and noneffective doses of tropisetron (a 5-HT(3) receptor antagonist) and augmented by 1-(m-chlorophenyl)-biguanide (mCPBG, a 5-HT(3) receptor agonist). Moreover, low doses of morphine (0.1 and 0.5 mg/kg) alone or in combination with potent doses of 5-HT(3) receptor agonist or antagonist could not alter the proconvulsive properties of citalopram at higher dose (50 mg/kg), ruling out the contribution of 5-HT(3) to this effect. In summary, our findings demonstrate that 5-HT(3) receptor mediates the additive anticonvulsant properties of morphine and low-dose citalopram. This could constitute a new approach to augmenting the efficacy and curtailing the adverse effects of citalopram.

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    • "Infusion was halted when general clonus (forelimb clonus followed by full clonus of the body) was observed. The minimal dose of PTZ (mg/kg of mice weight) needed to induce general clonus was recorded as an index of clonic seizure threshold [23] [24] [25]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Thalidomide is an old glutamic acid derivative which was initially used as a sedative medication but withdrawn from the market due to the high incidence of teratogenicity. Recently, it has reemerged because of its potential for counteracting number of diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders. Other than the antiemetic and hypnotic aspects, thalidomide exerts some anticonvulsant properties in experimental settings. However, the underlying mechanisms of thalidomide actions are not fully realized yet. Some investigations revealed that thalidomide could elicit immunomodulatory or neuromodulatory properties by affecting different targets, including cytokines (such as TNF α), neurotransmitters, and nitric oxide (NO). In this regard, we used a model of clonic seizure induced by pentylenetetrazole (PTZ) in male NMRI mice to investigate whether the anticonvulsant effect of thalidomide is affected through modulation of the l-arginine-nitric oxide pathway or not. Injection of a single effective dose of thalidomide (10mg/kg, i.p. or higher) significantly increased the seizure threshold (P<0.05). On the one hand, pretreatment with low and per se noneffective dose of l-arginine [NO precursor] (10, 30 and 60mg/kg) prevented the anticonvulsant effect of thalidomide. On the other hand, NOS inhibitors [l-NAME and 7-NI] augmented the anticonvulsant effect of a subeffective dose of thalidomide (1 and 5mg/kg, i.p.) at relatively low doses. Meanwhile, several doses of aminoguanidine [an inducible NOS inhibitor] (20, 50 and 100mg/kg) failed to alter the anticonvulsant effect of thalidomide significantly. In summary, our findings demonstrated that the l-arginine-nitric oxide pathway can be involved in the anticonvulsant properties of thalidomide, and the role of constitutive nNOS is prominent in the reported neuroprotective feature.
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    • "For example, serotonin deficiency can induce epileptic seizures while some antiepileptic drugs produce antiepileptic effects by increasing extracellular 5-HT level [2]–[4]. Furthermore, several 5-HT receptor subtypes may be relevant to epilepsy, such as 5-HT1A, 5-HT1B and 5-HT3 [2]–[5]. Particularly evidence of behavioral pharmacology showed that activation of 5-HT3 exerted the anticonvulsive effect. "
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, studies have shown that serotonin plays an important role in the control of seizure. However, the specific role of 5-HT receptor subtypes is not yet well described, in particular that of the 5-HT3 receptor. The present study was aimed to investigate the role of 5-HT3 receptor on the pentylenetetrazole (PTZ)-induced seizure in mice. Firstly, seizure latency was significantly prolonged by a 5-HT3 receptor agonist SR 57227 in a dose-dependent manner. Seizure score and mortality were also decreased by SR 57227 in PTZ-treated mice. Furthermore, these anticonvulsant effects of SR 57227 were inhibited by a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist ondansetron. However, ondansetron alone had no effect on seizure latency, seizure score or mortality at different doses. Immunohistochemical studies have also shown that c-Fos expression was significantly increased in hippocampus (dentate gyrus, CA1, CA3 and CA4) of PTZ-treated mice. Furthermore, c-Fos expression was significantly inhibited by ondansetron in mice treated with PTZ and SR 57227. An ELISA study showed that SR 57227 attenuated the PTZ-induced inhibitory effects of GABA levels in hippocampus and cortex, and the attenuated effects of SR 57227 were antagonized by ondansetron in hippocampus but not cortex. Our findings suggest that activation of 5-HT3 receptor by SR 57227, which plays an important role on the control of seizure induced by PTZ, may be related to GABA activity in hippocampus. Therefore, 5-HT3 receptor subtype is a potential target for the treatment of epilepsy.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · PLoS ONE
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    • "In our study, morphine at low dose (1 mg/kg) decreased the seizure susceptibility induced by PTZ (Fig. 1). These dose-dependent properties of morphine are in line with the results of other studies reporting a similar effect and dose response for this drug in the PTZ-induced seizure paradigm [21] [28]. It has been demonstrated that low doses of morphine show an anticonvulsant effect against seizures induced by GABA-transmission blockers including PTZ, picrotoxin, bicuculline and isoniazid [29] [30] while the higher doses of this opioid receptor agonist increase the susceptibility of animals to the same seizure models [31]. "
    Dataset: PHB10057

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