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Effect of triiodothyronine (T3) augmentation of acute milnacipran administration on monoamine levels: an in vivo microdialysis study in rats

Authors Kitaichi Y, Inoue T, Nakagawa S, Boku S, Kato, Kusumi I, Koyama T

Received 10 August 2012

Accepted for publication 15 September 2012

Published 30 October 2012 Volume 2012:8 Pages 501—507


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Yuji Kitaichi, Takeshi Inoue, Shin Nakagawa, Shuken Boku, Akiko Kato, Ichiro Kusumi, Tsukasa Koyama

Department of Psychiatry, Hokkaido University Graduate School of Medicine, Sapporo, Japan

Background: Up to 30% of depressed patients are partially or totally resistant to antidepressant therapy. The administration of triiodothyronine (T3) to antidepressant nonresponders can be an effective augmentation strategy, although the mechanism is not fully understood.
Methods: In vivo microdialysis was used to examine the effect of T3 augmentation of the antidepressant, milnacipran. Basal extracellular serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine levels were measured before and after acute milnacipran administration in the medial prefrontal cortex and amygdala of rats which had received subchronic (7 days) T3 treatment or control saline.
Results: Subchronic administration of T3 at 0.1 mg/kg significantly increased basal extracellular levels of serotonin in the medial prefrontal cortex, but not in the amygdala. In contrast, subchronic administration of T3 at 0.2 mg/kg did not alter basal extracellular serotonin levels in the medial prefrontal cortex. Basal extracellular levels of norepinephrine and dopamine were not modified by either dose of T3 in either region. Acute administration of milnacipran, a serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor, to control animals resulted in a significant increase of extracellular levels of serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. When administered to animals treated subchronically with T3 at 0.1 mg/kg, milnacipran produced an additional increase in extracellular serotonin levels but not in levels of norepinephrine or dopamine in the medial prefrontal cortex of rats.
Conclusion: These results suggest that the mechanism of the augmentation effect of milnacipran by T3 administration occurs via enhancement of serotonergic neurotransmission, but not through noradrenergic or dopaminergic neurotransmission.

Keywords: depression, in vivo microdialysis, milnacipran, monoamines, triiodothyronine

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