Pharmacology of MDMA- and Amphetamine-Like New Psychoactive Substances

Simmler, Linda D. and Liechti, Matthias E.. (2018) Pharmacology of MDMA- and Amphetamine-Like New Psychoactive Substances. Handbook of experimental pharmacology. pp. 143-164.

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Official URL: https://edoc.unibas.ch/69591/

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New psychoactive substances (NPS) with amphetamine-, aminoindan-, and benzofuran basic chemical structures have recently emerged for recreational drug use. Detailed information about their psychotropic effects and health risks is often limited. At the same time, it emerged that the pharmacological profiles of these NPS resemble those of amphetamine or 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Amphetamine-like NPS induce psychostimulation and euphoria mediated predominantly by norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (DA) transporter (NET and DAT) inhibition and transporter-mediated release of NE and DA, thus showing a more catecholamine-selective profile. MDMA-like NPS frequently induce well-being, empathy, and prosocial effects and have only moderate psychostimulant properties. These MDMA-like substances primarily act by inhibiting the serotonin (5-HT) transporter (SERT) and NET, also inducing 5-HT and NE release. Monoamine receptor interactions vary considerably among amphetamine- and MDMA-like NPS. Clinically, amphetamine- and MDMA-like NPS can induce sympathomimetic toxicity. The aim of this chapter is to review the state of knowledge regarding these substances with a focus on the description of the in vitro pharmacology of selected amphetamine- and MDMA-like NPS. In addition, it is aimed to provide links between pharmacological profiles and in vivo effects and toxicity, which leads to the conclusion that abuse liability for amphetamine-like NPS may be higher than for MDMA-like NPS, but that the risk for developing the life-threatening serotonin syndrome may be increased for MDMA-like NPS.
Faculties and Departments:03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Biomedizin > Department of Biomedicine, University Hospital Basel > Psychopharmacology Research (Liechti)
03 Faculty of Medicine > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Klinische Pharmakologie
03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Klinische Forschung > Bereich Medizinische Fächer (Klinik) > Klinische Pharmakologie
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Pharmazeutische Wissenschaften > Pharmazie > Molecular and Systems Toxicology (Odermatt)
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Pharmazeutische Wissenschaften > Pharmazie > Neuropharmacology (Simmler)
UniBasel Contributors:Liechti, Matthias Emanuel and Simmler, Linda
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:27 Apr 2023 03:10
Deposited On:18 Apr 2019 15:08

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