Effects of long-term treatment with haloperidol, clozapine and aripiprazole on mice isolated vas deferens

Int Urol Nephrol. 2017 Sep;49(9):1561-1567. doi: 10.1007/s11255-017-1640-9. Epub 2017 Jul 3.


Purpose: Sexual dysfunction is a common condition in patients taking antipsychotics and is the most bothersome symptom and adverse drug effect, resulting in a negative effect on treatment compliance. Pharmacology research into human ejeculatory disorders is limited to clinical studies with registered drugs affecting the ejaculation process; therefore, animal research has become the need. We aimed to investigate the effects of haloperidol, clozapine and aripiprazole on serotonin, noradrenaline, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and potassium chloride (KCl)-induced contractions of the vas deferens in order to evaluate the effect of haloperidol, clozapine and aripiprazole on the contraction of the vas deferens.

Methods: Male inbred BALB/c ByJ mice aged 7 weeks upon arrival to the laboratory were used in this study. Haloperidol, clozapine, aripiprazole, serotonin, noradrenaline, ATP and KCl were dissolved in 0.9% physiological saline. The mice were randomly divided into experimental groups as follows: saline; haloperidol 0.125 mg/kg; haloperidol 0.25 mg/kg; clozapine 1.25 mg/kg; clozapine 2.5 mg/kg; aripiprazole 3 mg/kg; aripiprazole 6 mg/kg. Mice were treated by ip injection of drugs during 21 days. Mice receiving only the vehicle ip (0.9% saline) during 21 days served as control group (n = 7). Each experimental group consisted of 7 mice. After 21 days of treatment, epididymal and prostatic portions of vas deferens were surgically dissected free and immersed in 20-mL organ baths containing Krebs' solution. The effects of chronic treatment with haloperidol (0.125 and 0.25 mg/kg), clozapine(1.25 and 2.5 mg/kg) and aripiprazole (3 and 6 mg/kg) were investigated on serotonin [10 (-8) to 10 (-4) M], noradrenaline [10 (-8) to 10 (-4) M], ATP [10 (-8) to 10 (-4) M] and 80 mM KCl-induced contractile responses in the epididymal and prostatic portions of mice isolated vas deferens strips. Statistical comparison between the groups was performed using ANOVA supported by Dunnett's post hoc test.

Results: Serotonin-induced contractile responses were significantly increased in the epididymal and prostatic portions of the vas deferens obtained from the haloperidol-treated group and clozapine-treated group. However, aripiprazole treatment had no effect on serotonin responses in both epididymal and prostatic portions of mice vas deferens. On the other hand, haloperidol and clozapine treatments significantly inhibited both noradrenaline and ATP-induced contractions of the prostatic and epididymal portions of the mice vas deferens, but had no effect on KCl-induced contractions of the vas deferens in both portions. There were no significant differences in KCl-induced contractile responses among the groups.

Conclusions: These results revealed that induced contractions of vas deferens were affected after chronic treatment with haloperidol and clozapine but not aripiprazole. Serotonergic, noradrenergic and purinergic receptors may, at least in part, contribute to changes in vas deferens contractions in mice with chronic treatment of haloperidol and clozapine but not aripiprazole.

Keywords: Aripiprazole; Clozapine; Haloperidol; Organ bath.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Antipsychotic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Aripiprazole / pharmacology*
  • Clozapine / pharmacology*
  • Haloperidol / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Muscle Contraction / drug effects
  • Muscle, Smooth / drug effects
  • Norepinephrine / pharmacology
  • Potassium Chloride / pharmacology
  • Random Allocation
  • Serotonin / pharmacology
  • Vas Deferens / drug effects*


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Serotonin
  • Potassium Chloride
  • Aripiprazole
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Clozapine
  • Haloperidol
  • Norepinephrine