Effects of SB-269970, a 5-HT7 receptor antagonist, in mouse models predictive of antipsychotic-like activity

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5-HT7 receptors have been linked to a number of psychiatric disorders including anxiety and depression. The localization of 5-HT7 receptors in the thalamus, a key sensory processing center, and the high affinity of many atypical antipsychotic compounds for these receptors have led to the speculation of the utility of 5-HT7 antagonists in schizophrenia. The goal of these studies was to examine the effects of pharmacologic blockade and genetic ablation of 5-HT7 receptors in animal models predictive of antipsychotic-like activity. We evaluated the effects of SB-269970, a selective 5-HT7 receptor antagonist, on amphetamine and ketamine-induced hyperactivity and prepulse inhibition (PPI) deficits. In addition, sensorimotor gating function and locomotor activity were evaluated in 5-HT7 knockout mice. Locomotor activity was measured for up to 180 min using an automated infrared photobeam system, and PPI was evaluated in startle chambers. SB-269970 (3, 10 and 30 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) significantly blocked amphetamine [3 mg/kg, subcutaneously (s.c.)] and ketamine (30 mg/kg, s.c.)-induced hyperactivity and reversed amphetamine (10 mg/kg, s.c.)-induced but not ketamine (30 mg/kg, s.c.)-induced PPI deficits, without changing spontaneous locomotor activity and startle amplitude. The largest dose of SB-269970 did not block the effects of amphetamine in 5-HT7 knockout mice. Collectively, these results indicate that blockade of 5-HT7 receptors partially modulates glutamatergic and dopaminergic function and could be clinically useful for the treatment of positive symptoms of schizophrenia.

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