Characterization of beta-phenylethylamine-induced monoamine release in rat nucleus accumbens: a microdialysis study

Eur J Pharmacol. 1998 May 22;349(2-3):163-9. doi: 10.1016/s0014-2999(98)00191-5.


In vivo microdialysis was used to investigate the effect of beta-phenylethylamine on extracellular levels of monoamines and their metabolites in the nucleus accumbens of conscious rats. At all doses tested (1, 10 and 100 microM), infusion of beta-phenylethylamine through the microdialysis probe significantly increased extracellular levels of dopamine in the nucleus accumbens. These increases were dose-related. The increase in dopamine levels induced by 100 microM beta-phenylethylamine was not affected by co-perfusion of 4 microM tetrodotoxin. The ability of 100 microM beta-phenylethylamine to increase the extracellular level of dopamine was comparable to that of the same dose of methamphetamine. On the other hand, beta-phenylethylamine had a much less potent enhancing effect on 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) than dopamine levels. Only the highest dose (100 microM) caused a statistically significant effect on 5-HT levels. Over the dose range tested (1, 10 and 100 microM), beta-phenylethylamine had no effect on extracellular metabolite levels of dopamine and 5-HT. The results suggest that beta-phenylethylamine increases the efflux of monoamines, preferentially dopamine, without affecting monoamine metabolism, in the nucleus accumbens.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dopamine / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Microdialysis
  • Nucleus Accumbens / drug effects*
  • Nucleus Accumbens / metabolism
  • Phenethylamines / pharmacology*
  • Psychotropic Drugs / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Serotonin / metabolism*
  • Tetrodotoxin / pharmacology


  • Phenethylamines
  • Psychotropic Drugs
  • phenethylamine
  • Serotonin
  • Tetrodotoxin
  • Dopamine