Behavioral, toxic, and neurochemical effects of sydnocarb, a novel psychomotor stimulant: comparisons with methamphetamine. (1/2040)

Sydnocarb (3-(beta-phenylisopropyl)-N-phenylcarbamoylsydnonimine) is a psychostimulant in clinical practice in Russia as a primary and adjunct therapy for a host of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and depression. It has been described as a stimulant with an addiction liability and toxicity less than that of amphetamines. The present study undertook to evaluate the psychomotor stimulant effects of sydnocarb in comparison to those of methamphetamine. Sydnocarb increased locomotor activity of mice with reduced potency (approximately 10-fold) and efficacy compared with methamphetamine. Sydnocarb blocked the locomotor depressant effects of haloperidol at doses that were inactive when given alone. The locomotor stimulant effects of both methamphetamine and sydnocarb were dose-dependently blocked by the dopamine D1 and D2 antagonists SCH 39166 and spiperone, respectively; blockade generally occurred at doses of the antagonists that did not depress locomotor activity when given alone. In mice trained to discriminate methamphetamine from saline, sydnocarb fully substituted for methamphetamine with a 9-fold lower potency. When substituted for methamphetamine under self-administration experiments in rats, 10-fold higher concentrations of sydnocarb maintained responding by its i.v. presentation. Sydnocarb engendered stereotypy in high doses with approximately a 2-fold lower potency than methamphetamine. However, sydnocarb was much less efficacious than methamphetamine in inducing stereotyped behavior. Both sydnocarb and methamphetamine increased dialysate levels of dopamine in mouse striatum; however, the potency and efficacy of sydnocarb was less than methamphetamine. The convulsive effects of cocaine were significantly enhanced by the coadministration of nontoxic doses of methamphetamine but not of sydnocarb. Taken together, the present findings indicate that sydnocarb has psychomotor stimulant effects that are shared by methamphetamine while demonstrating a reduced behavioral toxicity.  (+info)

Ethanol as a hypnotic in insomniacs: self administration and effects on sleep and mood. (2/2040)

The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of low ethanol doses on sleep and mood and to assess its reinforcing effects used as a hypnotic. Twenty healthy adults, aged 21-45 yrs, all moderate social drinkers, were studied: eleven subjects had insomnia and nine were normal sleepers, as documented by clinical polysomnography. On two sampling nights each, ethanol (0.5 g/kg) or placebo was administered before sleep in color-coded cups presented in three doses (0.2, 0.2, and 0.1 g/kg) separated by 15 min. On three subsequent nights subjects chose their preferred presleep beverage (0.2 g/kg ethanol or placebo) based on cup color and were given an opportunity for 3 additional refills (0.2 g/kg each) of the chosen beverage at 15 min intervals, yielding a total possible dose of 0.8 g/kg. Insomniacs chose ethanol 67% of nights and normals 22%. Insomniacs chose significantly more ethanol refills than normals for an average nightly dose of 0.45 g/kg and normals took significantly more placebo refills. On the sampling nights 0.5 g/kg ethanol reduced REM sleep for both groups for the 8-hr sleep period and in insomniacs increased stage 3-4 sleep and reduced stage 1 sleep during the first half of the night to the level seen in the normals. Other sleep variables were not altered in either group or halves of the night. Presleep improvements in the Profile of Mood States tension and concentration factors were also associated with ethanol administration. Thus, acutely, both sleep and mood effects appear to be associated with the reinforcing effects of ethanol as a hypnotic for insomniacs.  (+info)

Reinstatement of alcohol-seeking behavior by drug-associated discriminative stimuli after prolonged extinction in the rat. (3/2040)

Clinical observations suggest that stimuli associated with the availability or consumption of ethanol can evoke subjective feelings of craving and trigger episodes of relapse in abstinent alcoholics. To study the motivational significance of alcohol-related environmental cues experimentally, the effects of discriminative stimuli previously predictive of alcohol availability on the reinstatement of ethanol-seeking behavior were examined. Wistar rats were trained to lever-press for 10% (w/v) ethanol or water in the presence of distinct auditory cues. The rats were then subjected to an extinction phase where lever presses had no scheduled consequences. After extinction, the animals were exposed to the respective auditory cues without the availability of ethanol or water. Neither the ethanol (SA+) nor water-associated (SA-) auditory cue increased responding over extinction levels. In contrast, subsequent presentation of an olfactory cue associated with ethanol (SO+), but not a water-associated (SO-) cue significantly reinstated lever pressing behavior in the absence of the primary reinforcer. Moreover, responding elicited by the concurrent presentation of the SO+ and SA+ was selectively attenuated by the opiate antagonist naltrexone (0.25 mg/kg; s.c.). The results suggest that ethanol-associated cues can reinstate extinguished ethanol-seeking behavior in rats, but that the efficacy of these stimuli may be modality-specific. In addition, the present procedures may be useful for studying neurobiological mechanisms of alcohol-seeking behavior and relapse.  (+info)

An evaluation of increasing doses of ranitidine for treatment of heartburn. (4/2040)

BACKGROUND: This was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre, parallel group, dose-ranging trial of ranitidine tablets for relief of episodic heartburn. Adult out-patients who reported heartburn relieved by antacids at least seven times per week were eligible. METHODS: Patients who successfully completed a 1-week single-blind placebo run-in phase and who did not achieve adequate relief in more than 50% of heartburn episodes were randomized to a 1-week, double-blind treatment phase during which they received ranitidine doses of 25, 75 or 125 mg, or placebo. RESULTS: Of 577 patients randomized, 566 had at least one evaluable heartburn episode and were included in the intention-to-treat analysis. All three ranitidine doses were statistically significantly superior to placebo in providing overall episodic heartburn relief for the first episode (P < 0.002), last episode (P+info)

Dopamine fluctuations in the nucleus accumbens during maintenance, extinction, and reinstatement of intravenous D-amphetamine self-administration. (5/2040)

Moment-to-moment fluctuations of nucleus accumbens dopamine (DA) were determined in rats self-administering or passively receiving "yoked" intravenous infusions of D-amphetamine. The initial lever presses of each session caused elevations in DA concentration, usually to an initial peak that was not maintained throughout the rest of the session. As the initial ("loading") injections were metabolized, DA levels dropped toward baseline but were sustained at elevated plateaus by subsequent lever pressing that was spaced throughout the remainder of the 3 hr sessions. During this period, DA levels fluctuated phasically, time-locked to the cycle of periodic lever pressing. Consistent with the known pharmacological actions and dynamics of amphetamine, peak DA elevations were seen approximately 10-15 min after each injection, and the mean DA level was at a low point in the phasic cycle at the time of each new lever press. During extinction periods when saline was substituted for amphetamine, DA levels dropped steadily toward baseline levels despite a dramatic increase in (now-unrewarded) lever pressing. Noncontingent injections during extinction reinstated lever-pressing behavior and increased nucleus accumbens DA concentrations. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that under the conditions of this experiment-during periods of amphetamine intoxication in well-trained animals-the timing of amphetamine self-administration comes primarily under the control of extracellular DA concentrations. The probability of lever pressing during the maintenance phase is highest when DA concentrations fall near a characteristic trigger point, a trigger point that is significantly elevated above baseline, and falls as DA concentrations fall below or increase above that trigger point.  (+info)

Effects of contingent and non-contingent cocaine on drug-seeking behavior measured using a second-order schedule of cocaine reinforcement in rats. (6/2040)

Rats were trained to respond with intravenous cocaine as the reinforcer under a fixed interval 15-min schedule, during which conditioned stimuli paired with cocaine were presented contingent on completion of a fixed ratio of 10 responses (i.e., second-order schedule of reinforcement). The effects of contingent and noncontingent cocaine were investigated. The results show that pretreatment with noncontingent (i.e., experimenter-administered) cocaine led to a satiation-like effect that was reflected in decreased numbers of responses and a tendency for an increased latency to initiate responding when the doses of cocaine administered were similar to or higher than the training/maintenance dose of cocaine. By contrast, noncontingent administration of cocaine doses lower than the training/maintenance dose, and response-contingent cocaine administration, led to increased drug-seeking behavior, as reflected in increased numbers of responses. The present data indicate that at least two factors determine whether administration of cocaine would lead to drug-seeking behavior: whether the cocaine administration is contingent or noncontingent, and the relative magnitude of the cocaine dose administered in relation to the training/maintenance dose of cocaine.  (+info)

Effects of self-administered cocaine on plasma adrenocorticotropic hormone and cortisol in male rhesus monkeys. (7/2040)

This study was designed to examine the effects of self-administered cocaine on hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity in rhesus monkeys. Initially, basal release of cortisol and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) was measured in singly housed male and female monkeys (n = 9) over a 24-h period using plasma samples obtained from indwelling venous catheters. Basal cortisol and ACTH levels in both male and female rhesus monkeys demonstrated a circadian pattern of release, with peak levels for cortisol (19.60 +/- 2.16 microgram/dl) and ACTH (19.63 +/- 2.56 pg/ml) measured at 6:00 AM. The nadir for ACTH (6.27 +/- 0.62 pg/ml) occurred at 6:00 PM, preceding the cortisol nadir (5.55 +/- 1.21 microgram/dl) at 9:00 PM. The reinforcing effects of saline, 0.01, 0.03, 0.1, and 0.3 mg/kg/injection cocaine were then evaluated using a fixed-ratio 30, time-out 10-min schedule of reinforcement in seven male monkeys. Blood was sampled before, during, and after self-administration sessions. Self-administration of cocaine produced dose-dependent increases in cortisol and ACTH. One dose of cocaine (0.03 mg/kg/injection), although reliably self-administered, did not produce a significant increase in HPA axis activity. These results indicate that although cocaine dose-dependently increases HPA axis activity, the HPA effect is more likely a consequence of overall cocaine intake than it is an indicator of cocaine doses that are sufficient to maintain self-administration behavior.  (+info)

The cost effectiveness of patient-applied versus provider-administered intervention strategies for the treatment of external genital warts. (8/2040)

OBJECTIVE: External genital warts are one of the fastest growing sexually transmitted diseases in the United States today. Two forms of therapy are available: provider-administered and patient-applied. In the most widely used provider-administered ablative therapies, sustained clearance rates range from 18.5% to 40.1%. With nonablative, patient-applied therapies, which are typically more acceptable to patients, sustained clearance rates range from 19.6% with podofilox gel to 44.0% with imiquimod cream. The purpose of this study, given the range of therapies available, their cost differences, and clinical trial-reported differences in rates of sustained clearance, is to determine which therapy modalities, from the providers' perspective, are the most cost effective and which are likely to be the most acceptable to the patient population. STUDY DESIGN: We consider the cost effectiveness of the two patient-applied therapies as first-line therapy followed by provider-administered ablative treatment as second-line therapy. A decision-analytic model framework is developed, with data drawn both from clinical trials and from previously published studies. RESULTS: When considering a two-stage therapy model, with an average sustained clearance rate of 30% assumed for provider-administered ablative therapies, estimated costs per sustained cleared patient are $1265 for patients initially treated with imiquimod and $1304 for patients initially treated with podofilox gel. CONCLUSIONS: Initial treatment with imiquimod is the preferred intervention option as it yields a 39% greater sustained clearance rate than podofilox gel while being 3% less costly per successful outcome.  (+info)