On the modulation of the effects of some 5 - HT - related agents in axiety models

  • James W. McBlane

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


The results of an investigation into how stressors interact with the action of serotonergic agents in animal models of anxiety are presented.
Water deprivation and restraint both increased plasma corticosterone concentrations and elevated 5-HT turnover. In the elevated X-maze, water deprivation had a duration-dependent "anxiolytic" effect. The effect of restraint was dependent on the duration of restraint and was to inhibit maze exploration. Water-deprivation did not influence the action of diazepam or any 5-HT1A ligand in the X-maze.
Restraint switched the "anxiogenic" effect of 8-0H-DPAT to either "anxiolytic" or inactive, depending on the time after the restraint when testing was performed. The Vogel conflict test detected an "anxiolytic" "anxiolytic"V"anxiolytic""anxiolytic" effect of buspirone which was additive with "anxiolytic" effects of pindolol and propranolol. Diazepam and fluoxetine were also active, but 8-0H-DPAT, ipsapirone, gepirone and yohimbine were inactive.
In the elevated X-maze, "anxiogenic" responses to picrotoxin, flumazenil, RU 24969, CGS 12066B, fluoxetine and 8-0H-DPAT were detected. Other 5-HT1A ligands were inactive. Diazepam and corticosterone had "anxiolytic" effects. Increasing light intensity did not change behaviour on the elevated X-maze, but was able to reverse the effect of 8- OH-DPAT to an "anxiolytic" action. This effect was attributed to a presynaptic mechanism, because it was abolished by pCPA. The occurence of different behaviours in different reglons of the maze was shown to be susceptible to modulation by "anxiolytic" and "anxiogenic" drugs.
These results are discussed in the context of there being at least two separate 5-HT mechanisms which are involved in the control of anxiety.
Date of AwardOct 1992
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorSheila Handley (Supervisor)


  • 5 -HT1A receptor
  • 8 -OH-DPAT
  • stress
  • anxiety
  • elevated X-maze

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