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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A 5-HT2C agonist elicits hyperactivity and oral dyskinesia with hypophagia in rabbits.

Serotonergic 5-HT2C and 5-HT1B receptors mediate inhibitory controls of eating. Questions have arisen about potential behavioral and neurological toxicity of drugs that stimulate the 2C site. We evaluated eating and other motor responses in male Dutch-belted rabbits after administration of m-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP). Studies conducted in vitro and in vivo assessed the pharmacological specificity of the ingestive actions of this agent. mCPP (0.15-10 micromol/kg sc) reduced consumption of chow and 20% sucrose solution with equal potencies (ED50 approximately equal 0.6 micromol/kg). In radioligand binding to rabbit cortex, mCPP displayed 15-fold higher affinity for 5-HT2C than for 5-HT1B receptors. The serotonin antagonist mesulergine (7000-fold selective for 5-HT2C) reversed the hypophagic action of mCPP, but the 5-HT1B/1D antagonist GR127,935 did not. GR127,935 (0.5 micromol/kg) did prevent hypophagia produced by the highly selective 5-HT1B/1D agonist GR46,611. Observational methods demonstrated that mCPP decreased the frequency of eating chow but increased other motor activities. When rabbits consumed sucrose, videoanalysis revealed that mCPP reduced total time licking and the duration of individual bouts, but not bout frequency or the actual rate of consumption. mCPP increased locomotor and other activities, and greatly increased vacuous oromotor stereotypies and tongue protrusions. Nonetheless, rabbits licked accurately at the spout for sucrose. When sucrose was infused intraorally through a cheek catheter, mCPP actually increased the peak amplitude and overall magnitude of jaw movements. We conclude that mCPP stimulates 5-HT2C receptors to reduce food intake in rabbits. This hypophagia involves disruption of appetitive components of eating and is accompanied by adverse motor actions. This profile raises questions about the use of the 5-HT2C receptor as a target for novel therapeutic agents for obesity.[1]


  1. A 5-HT2C agonist elicits hyperactivity and oral dyskinesia with hypophagia in rabbits. Simansky, K.J., Dave, K.D., Inemer, B.R., Nicklous, D.M., Padron, J.M., Aloyo, V.J., Romano, A.G. Physiol. Behav. (2004) [Pubmed]
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