3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA; “ecstasy”) is a popular recreational drug. This study explored the role of dopamine in the psychotropic effects of MDMA using bupropion to inhibit the transporters through which MDMA releases dopamine and norepinephrine. The pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic interactions between bupropion and MDMA were studied in healthy subjects. Bupropion reduced the MDMA-induced elevations in plasma norepinephrine concentrations and the heart rate response to MDMA. In contrast, bupropion increased plasma MDMA concentrations and prolonged its subjective effects. Conversely, MDMA increased plasma bupropion concentrations. The results indicate a role for the transporter-mediated release of norepinephrine in the cardiostimulant effects of MDMA, but do not support a modulatory role for dopamine in the mood effects of MDMA. The results also indicate that the use of MDMA during therapy with bupropion may result in higher plasma concentrations of both MDMA and bupropion, and enhanced mood effects but lower cardiac stimulation.
See article at J Pharmacol Exp Ther 2015, 353:102–111.
- Copyright © 2015 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics