Reversal of sexual exhaustion by serotonergic and noradrenergic agents

Behav Brain Res. 1994 Jun 30;62(2):127-34. doi: 10.1016/0166-4328(94)90019-1.


The possible participation of the serotonergic and the noradrenergic systems in the control of the inhibitory state present during sexual satiation was studied from a pharmacological perspective. It was found that the 5-HT1A agonist 8-OH-DPAT and the alpha 2 adrenoceptor antagonist, yohimbine were effective in reversing the sexual inhibition resulting from sexual exhaustion. These findings show that the inhibition present during satiation is reversible and suggest that central mechanisms underlie it. The serotonergic as well as the noradrenergic systems, probably through their 5-HT1A and alpha 2 receptors, respectively, play a role in the establishment of this phenomenon. Additionally, the main features of the development of sexual exhaustion were reviewed. It was found that sexual exhaustion has two different expressions: a major proportion of the exhausted rats does not copulate and a third part of this population is able to execute one ejaculatory series from which they do not recover. The data are discussed in terms of the motivational and consummatory components of male sexual behaviour.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 8-Hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin / pharmacology
  • Adrenergic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Copulation / drug effects
  • Copulation / physiology
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Ejaculation / drug effects
  • Ejaculation / physiology
  • Female
  • Male
  • Neural Inhibition / drug effects
  • Neural Inhibition / physiology
  • Norepinephrine / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Reaction Time / drug effects
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Satiety Response / drug effects*
  • Satiety Response / physiology
  • Serotonin / physiology*
  • Serotonin Receptor Agonists / pharmacology*
  • Sexual Behavior, Animal / drug effects*
  • Sexual Behavior, Animal / physiology
  • Yohimbine / pharmacology


  • Adrenergic Agents
  • Serotonin Receptor Agonists
  • Yohimbine
  • Serotonin
  • 8-Hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin
  • Norepinephrine