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Absence of behavioral sensitization in healthy human subjects following repeated exposure to ketamine


Psychopharmacology 179(1): 136-143
Absence of behavioral sensitization in healthy human subjects following repeated exposure to ketamine
Rationale: Sensitization to the effects of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) glutamate receptor antagonists is robust in animals. However, the applicability of this model to humans is unclear because it currently rests on highly confounded retrospective studies of individuals who experienced protracted psychoses following repeated binges with NMDA receptor antagonists. Objectives: The purpose of the current study was to determine whether there was evidence of sensitization to the behavioral effects of ketamine in healthy human subjects with repeated exposure to this drug. Methods: Data were studied from 295 healthy human subjects who participated in one or more of 11 separate studies that involved ketamine administration over 14 ye ars. Positive and negative symptoms (Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale: BPRS), perceptual alterations (Clinician-Administered Dissociative States Scale: CADSS), and "high" and "anxiety" states (Visual Analog Scale: VAS) that were measured in all studies were included as outcome measures. Results: After including the number of previous exposures, number of previous studies, and time since first exposure as variables, repeated exposure to ketamine did not result in increased behavioral responses, suggestive of behavioral sensitization. Conclusion: The current data do not provide evidence that repeated exposure to ketamine, albeit limited, is associated with sensitization to the behavioral effects of ketamine.


Accession: 011719004

PMID: 15682309

DOI: 10.1007/s00213-004-2066-5



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