Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Antipsychotic drug doses and neuroleptic/dopamine receptors


ANTIPSYCHOTIC drugs, or neuroleptics, are thought to act by blocking dopamine receptors in the nervous system1–4. Recent direct evidence, based on stereospecific binding assays, supports this hypothesis of antipsychotic drug action5–9. As only a few antipsychotic drugs had been tested for their effects on the binding of haloperidol5–8, the question remained whether all antipsychotic drugs, regardless of chemical structure, would block the stereospecific binding of haloperidol. We report here that all clinically effective antipsychotic drugs (tested so far) block the stereo-specific binding of 3H-haloperidol at concentrations which correlate directly with the clinical potencies.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Relevant articles

Open Access articles citing this article.

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Prices vary by article type



Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout


  1. Van Rossum, J. M., Arch. int. Pharmacodyn., 160, 492–494 (1966).

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Iversen, L. L., Science, 188, 1084–1089 (1975).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Horn, A. S., Post, M. L., and Kennard, O., J. Pharm. Pharmac., 27, 553–563 (1975).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Matthysse, S., Fedn Proc., 32, 200–204 (1973).

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Seeman, P., Wong, M., and Lee, T., Fedn Proc., 33, 246 (1974).

    Google Scholar 

  6. Seeman, P., Wong, M., and Tedesco, J., Proc. Neurosci. Soc., 5, 405 (1975).

    Google Scholar 

  7. Seeman, P., Chau-Wong, M., Tedesco, J., and Wong, K., Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 72, 4376–4380 (1975).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Creese, I., Burt, D. R., and Snyder, S. H., Life Sci., 17, 993–1002 (1975).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Burt, D. R., Enna, S., Creese, I., and Snyder, S. H., Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 72, 4655–4659 (1975).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Seeman, P., Pharmac. Rev., 24, 583–655 (1972).

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  11. Seeman, P., Staiman, A., and Chau-Wong, M., J. Pharmac. exp. Ther., 190, 123–130 (1974).

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Seeman, P., and Lee, T., Science, 188, 1217–1219 (1975).

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Seeman, P., in Antipsychotic Drugs, Pharmacodynamics and Pharmacokinetics (edit. by Sedvall, G.) (Pergamon, Oxford, in the press).

  14. Forsman, A., Mårtensson, E., Nyberg, G., and Ohman, R., Naunyn–Schmiedeberg's Arch. Pharmac., 286, 113–124 (1974).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Sakalis, G., Curry, S. H., Mould, G. P., and Lader, M. H., Clin. Pharmac. Ther., 13, 931–946 (1972).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  16. Cooper, S. F., Albert, J.-M., Hillel, J., and Caille, G., Curr. Ther. Res., 15, 73–77 (1973).

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  17. Pecknold, J. C., Ban, T. A., Lehmann, H. E., and Climan, M., Int. J. clin. Pharmac., 11, 299–303 (1975).

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. Simpson, G. M., and Varga, V., Curr. Ther. Res., 16, 477–482 (1974).

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

SEEMAN, P., LEE, T., CHAU-WONG, M. et al. Antipsychotic drug doses and neuroleptic/dopamine receptors. Nature 261, 717–719 (1976).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:

This article is cited by


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing