Tricyclic Antidepressants: Evidence for an Intraneuronal Site of Action

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Science  25 Apr 1969:
Vol. 164, Issue 3878, pp. 437-439
DOI: 10.1126/science.164.3878.437


Desipramine, a tricyclic antidepressant drug, almost completely prevents the accumulation of tritiated norepinephrine by sympathetic neurons of the rat heart after the injection of a tracer dose of the labeled amine. However, desipramine does not alter the accumulation of norepinephrine after the injection of a large dose of the neurohormone. Despite the failure of desipramine to block the neuronal uptake of norepinephrine, it still prevents exogenous norepinephrine from displacing the endogenous neurohormone (previously labeled with H3-norepinephrine) from intraneuronal storage sites.

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