S 15535, a novel benzodioxopiperazine ligand of serotonin (5-HT)1A receptors: II. Modulation of hippocampal serotonin release in relation to potential anxiolytic properties

M J Millan, S Hjorth, R Samanin, R Schreiber, R Jaffard, B De Ladonchamps, S Veiga, B Goument, J L Peglion, M Spedding, M Brocco
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 1997, 282 (1): 148-61
In these studies, we characterized the influence of the novel benzodioxopiperazine serotonin (5-HT)1A ligand, S 15535, on the release of 5-HT in rat hippocampus and compared its potential anxiolytic properties with those of the 5-HT1A receptor partial agonist, buspirone, the 5-HT1A antagonist, WAY 100,635 and the benzodiazepine, diazepam (DZM). (Doses are in milligrams per kilogram s.c., unless otherwise specified.) S 15535 dose-dependently (0.3-3.0) reduced dialysate concentrations of 5-HT in the hippocampus of anesthetized rats. This action of S 15535 (3.0) was blocked by WAY 100,635 (0.3), (-)-penbutolol (2.0) and (-)-tertatolol (8.0), antagonists at 5-HT1A autoreceptors. In rats, fear-induced ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) were dose-dependently abolished by S 15535 (0.16-2.5 s.c. and 0.63-10.0 p.o.), an action mimicked by buspirone (0.02-2.5) and DZM (0.16-10.0). Further, the action of S 15535 (0.63) was abolished by WAY 100,635 (0.16) and (-)-penbutolol (10.0), which were inactive alone. S 15535 dose-dependently (0.63-10.0 s.c. and 2.5-40.0 p.o.) blocked aggressive encounters in isolated mice; buspirone (0.16-10.0) and, at high doses, DZM (2.5-40.0) were also effective. WAY 100,635 (0.16), which was inactive alone, fully antagonized the antiaggressive actions of S 15535 (2.5). In an elevated plus-maze, neither S 15535 (0.0025-10.0), buspirone (0.0025-10.0) nor WAY 100,635 (0.00063-0.63) significantly increased open-arm entries, whereas they were increased by DZM (0.16-0.63). In the pigeon conflict test, S 15535 (0.04-0.16 i.m.) markedly increased punished responses and only slightly decreased unpunished responses, even at a 64-fold higher dose. In contrast, buspirone (0.16-2.5 i.m.) and DZM (0.04-2.5 i.m.) showed no or a less marked (4-fold) separation between doses increasing punished and decreasing unpunished responses. In the presence of the 5-HT1A antagonist, (-)-alprenolol (10.0 mg/kg i.m.), S 15535 did not increase punished responses. In a Geller conflict paradigm in rats, S 15535 dose dependently (0.3-3.0) increased punished responses, and its action (1.0) was blocked by (-)-penbutolol (8.0). S 15535 (0.63-40.0 s.c. and 2.5-40.0 p.o.) exerted little influence on motor behavior. In conclusion, in line with its net inhibition of serotoninergic transmission by activation of 5-HT1A autoreceptors and blockade of postsynaptic 5-HT1A receptors, S 15535 expresses anxiolytic activity. In addition, it displays antiaggressive (and antidepressant, accompanying paper) properties. Further, S 15535 does not compromise motor behavior at doses over which it expresses its anxiolytic properties. Thus, S 15535 represents a promising candidate for the treatment of anxious states in man.

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