3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine increases excitability in the dentate gyrus: Role of 5HT2A receptor-induced PGE2 signaling

Stuart A. Collins, Courtney Huff, Nicolas Chiaia, Gary A. Gudelsky, Bryan K. Yamamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) is a widely abused psychostimulant, which causes release of serotonin in various forebrain regions. Recently, we reported that MDMA increases extracellular glutamate concentrations in the dentate gyrus, via activation of 5HT2A receptors. We examined the role of prostaglandin signaling in mediating the effects of 5HT2A receptor activation on the increases in extracellular glutamate and the subsequent long-term loss of parvalbumin interneurons in the dentate gyrus caused by MDMA. Administration of MDMA into the dentate gyrus of rats increased PGE2 concentrations which was prevented by coadministration of MDL100907, a 5HT2A receptor antagonist. MDMA-induced increases in extracellular glutamate were inhibited by local administration of SC-51089, an inhibitor of the EP1 prostaglandin receptor. Systemic administration of SC-51089 during injections of MDMA prevented the decreases in parvalbumin interneurons observed 10 days later. The loss of parvalbumin immunoreactivity after MDMA exposure coincided with a decrease in paired-pulse inhibition and afterdischarge threshold in the dentate gyrus. These changes were prevented by inhibition of EP1 and 5HT2A receptors during MDMA. Additional experiments revealed an increased susceptibility to kainic acid-induced seizures in MDMA-treated rats, which could be prevented with SC51089 treatments during MDMA exposure. Overall, these findings suggest that 5HT2A receptors mediate MDMA-induced PGE2 signaling and subsequent increases in glutamate. This signaling mediates parvalbumin cell losses as well as physiologic changes in the dentate gyrus, suggesting that the lack of the inhibition provided by these neurons increases the excitability within the dentate gyrus of MDMA-treated rats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1074-1084
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Neurochemistry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • MDMA
  • PGE2
  • glutamate
  • hippocampus
  • parvalbumin
  • serotonin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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