Letter | Published:

A Central Action of 5-Hydroxytryptamine and Noradrenaline

Naturevolume 192pages10831084 (1961) | Download Citation



THE experiments reported here were based on the observation that an intra-carotid or intravenous injection of d-lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD-25) depresses the transmission of orthodromic impulses through the lateral geniculate nucleus of the cat1. The nature of this depression suggests that LSD-25 can compete with the excitatory transmitter for post-synaptic receptor sites. Consequently the known antagonism between LSD-25 and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) at receptors of smooth muscle2 indicates the possibility that the as yet unknown central excitatory transmitter might be related to 5-HT. It is probable that the failure to demonstrate an action of 5-HT on these neurones1 was due to the blood-brain barrier, which is relatively impermeable to this substance3.

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  1. 1

    Evarts, E. V., Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci., 66, 479 (1956). Bishop, P. O., Burke, W., Davis, R., and Hayhow, W. R., Trans. Ophthal. Soc. Austral., 20, 50 (1961).

  2. 2

    Gaddum, S. H., Hameed, K. A., Hathway, D. E., and Stephens, F. F., Quart. J. Exp. Physiol., 40, 49 (1955).

  3. 3

    Woolley, D. W., in Hormones, Brain Function and Behaviour, edit. by Hoagland, H. (Academic Press, 1957).

  4. 4

    Curtis, D. R., and Eccles, R. M., J. Physiol., 141, 435 (1958). Curtis, D. R., and Watkins, J. C., J. Neurochem., 6, 117 (1960).

  5. 5

    Hofmann, A., Heim, R., Brack, A., Kobel, H., Frey, A., Ott, H., Petrzilka, Th., and Troxler, F., Helv. Chim. Acta, 42, 1557 (1959).

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  1. Department of Physiology, Australian National University, Canberra

    • D. R. CURTIS
    •  & R. DAVIS


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