The cerebromicrocirculation in the tetrabenzaine (TBZ) model of depression has been found to be abnormal with respect to (1) responsiveness of cerebral blood flow to increases in arterial CO2 content and (2) the effective permeability of the blood-brain barrier to water. Development of these abnormalities temporally paralleled the behavioral disturbances and catecholamine depletion induced by TBZ. These TBZ-induced changes occurred globally throughout the brain, being apparent in the forebrain, cerebellum, and medulla-pons. Pretreatment with the antidepressant amitriptyline prevented both behavioral and physiological effects of TBZ, whereas amitriptyline administered after TBZ was less effective. The results suggest that an important action of tricyclic antidepressants may be cerebromicrocirculatory effects.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biological Psychiatry