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Adverse effects of methylphenidate on the reproductive axis of adolescent female rats

Adverse effects of methylphenidate on the reproductive axis of adolescent female rats

  1. testodan
    Methylphenidate (MPH) is a schedule II psychotropic drug primarily prescribed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children As in many other antipsychotic medications, MPH activates parts of the brain stem and the frontal lobe that either produce or use dopamine for neurological functions through blockade of dopamine 2 receptors. As a result, extracellular dopamine levels are increased in the brain, and by lessening the firing of so-called background neurons that are not associated with the specific task performance, MPH allows the brain to transmit a clearer signal and filter out distraction, thereby enhancing the patient’s ability to focus on a given task. This property of MPH has made it a popular performance-enhancing drug among healthy individuals. Animal and human studies have shown, however, that the stimulus effects produced by MPH are similar to those of cocaine; over time, MPH has proven to have high abuse liabilities.
    Although the bioavailability of MPH is believed to be low because of extensive first-pass metabolism, studies with prepubertal rats show that drug uptake is high in the brain, with the maximal concentration occurring in the striatum. The density of dopamine transporters in the striatum is significantly reduced for a long time, even after termination of treatment. These findings clearly suggest that MPH has short-term and long-term effects. This is a special cause for concern because MPH abuse is most common and is rapidly
    rising among 11- to 19-year-old young adolescents who take this drug for its stimulant effects and/or for appetite suppression, wakefulness, increased focus and attentiveness, and euphoria. According to a report from the American Association of Poison Control Centers Toxic Exposure Surveillance System, the most common symptoms of MPH abuse in adolescents are tachycardia, agitation and irritability, and hypertension. Little is known, however, about the long-term effects of this drug on the reproductive axis. The primary objective of our study was to examine the effects of MPH on the female reproductive axis, which undergoes many dynamic changes during puberty.