Effect of beta-phenylethylamine and d-amphetamine on electrical self-stimulation of brain

Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 1976 Dec;5(6):661-4. doi: 10.1016/0091-3057(76)90308-7.


beta-phenylethylamine (PEA) has been viewed as amphetamine-like in its effects on behavior. Support for this putative similarity of action has been derived primarily from observations that both of these structually related compounds increase locomotor activity in a dose-related manner and at higher doses evoke stereotypies. Since d-amphetamine (d-A) produces a dose-related increase in the rate of bar pressing for electrical stimulation of the medial forebrain bundle, the effect of PEA on this behavioral paradigm was examined. Male Long-Evans rats implanted with bipolar electrodes self-administered 250 msec 60 Hz constant current sine wave trains over a 30-70 micronA range of intensities in daily 20-min tests. Over a range of 1-40 mg/kg IP of PEA, a dose-related decrease in self-stimulation rate was observed; pretreatment with para-chlorophenylalanine or alpha-methyl-para-tyrosine did not alter the response to 2.5 or 3o mg/kg IP of PEA. Since within the dose range of PEA used in this study a dose-related increase in locomotor activity was observed, and since d-A increases self-stimulation rate at doses that increase locomotor activity, it would seem that there are qualitative differences in the actions of d-A and PEA on behavior.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / physiology
  • Dextroamphetamine / pharmacology*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Interactions
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Fenclonine / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Methyltyrosines / pharmacology
  • Motor Activity / drug effects
  • Phenethylamines / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Self Stimulation / drug effects*
  • Time Factors


  • Methyltyrosines
  • Phenethylamines
  • Fenclonine
  • Dextroamphetamine