Effects of Hypericum Extract (LI 160) in Biochemical Models of Antidepressant Activity
 
   

Effects of Hypericum Extract (LI 160) in
Biochemical Models of Antidepressant Activity

This section is compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C.
Send all comments or additions to:
   Frankp@chiro.org
 
   
FROM:   Pharmacopsychiatry 1997 (Sep);   30 Suppl 2:   102107

Muller WE, Rolli M, Schafer C, Hafner U

Department of Pharmacology,
Biocenter University of Frankfurt, Germany

Since the mechanism of the antidepressant activity of hypericum extract is not yet understood, we tested possible effects of standardized hypericum extract (LI 160) in several biochemical models relevant for the mechanism of action of other antidepressant drugs. While LI 160 was only a weak inhibitor of MAO-A and MAO-B activity, it inhibited the synaptosomal uptake of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine with about equal affinity-2 micrograms/ml). Moreover, subchronic treatment of rats with hypericum extract led to a significant down-regulation of beta-receptors and to a significant up-regulation of 5-HT2-receptors in the frontal cortex. The data might suggest that hypericum extract acts via similar biochemical mechanisms to other antidepressants (e.g. tricyclics).


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