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5-Hydroxytryptamine in PsychiatryA Spectrum of Ideas$
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Merton Sandler, Alec Coppen, and Sara Harnett

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780192620118

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780192620118.001.0001

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Serotonin in anxiety: evidence from animal models

Serotonin in anxiety: evidence from animal models

(p.177) 15. Serotonin in anxiety: evidence from animal models
5-Hydroxytryptamine in Psychiatry

Mike Briley

Philippe Chopin

Oxford University Press

Benzodiazepines have been shown since the early 1970s to cause some reduction of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT, serotonin) turnover, but in view of similar effects on other neurotransmitters these results did not generate any major interest in serotonin as a transmitter in anxiety. The probability of a close link between serotonin and anxiety was highlighted by the demonstration of the anxiolytic properties of buspirone. Buspirone has a variety of pharmacological activities involving serotonin, noradrenaline, and dopamine, but its anticonflict properties are lost after serotonergic lesion, suggesting the importance of serotonin in anxiety. The anxiolytic activity in man of two close derivatives of buspirone, gepirone and ipsapirone, both of which lack the dopaminergic component of buspirone, further implicated serotonin in the control of anxiety.

Keywords:   benzodiazepines, neurotransmitters, anticonflict properties, anxiolytic properties, serotonergic lesion, dopaminergic component

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