Group II metabotropic glutamate receptor type 2 allosteric potentiators prevent sodium lactate-induced panic-like response in panic-vulnerable rats

Philip L. Johnson, Stephanie D. Fitz, Eric A. Engleman, Kjell A. Svensson, Jeffrey M. Schkeryantz, Anantha Shekhar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


Rats with chronic inhibition of GABA synthesis by infusion of l-allyglycine, a glutamic acid decarboxylase inhibitor, into their dorsomedial/perifornical hypothalamus are anxious and exhibit panic-like cardio-respiratory responses to treatment with intravenous (i.v.) sodium lactate (NaLac) infusions, in a manner similar to what occurs in patients with panic disorder. We previously showed that either NMDA receptor antagonists or metabotropic glutamate receptor type 2/3 receptor agonists can block such a NaLac response, suggesting that a glutamate mechanism is contributing to this panic-like state. Using this animal model of panic, we tested the efficacy of CBiPES and THIIC, which are selective group II metabotropic glutamate type 2 receptor allosteric potentiators (at 10-30mg/kg i.p.), in preventing NaLac-induced panic-like behavioral and cardiovascular responses. The positive control was alprazolam (3mg/kg i.p.), a clinically effective anti-panic benzodiazepine. As predicted, panic-prone rats given a NaLac challenge displayed NaLac-induced panic-like cardiovascular (i.e. tachycardia and hypertensive) responses and "anxiety" (i.e. decreased social interaction time) and "flight" (i.e. increased locomotion) -associated behaviors; however, systemic injection of the panic-prone rats with CBiPES, THIIC or alprazolam prior to the NaLac dose blocked all NaLac-induced panic-like behaviors and cardiovascular responses. These data suggested that in a rat animal model, selective group II metabotropic glutamate type 2 receptor allosteric potentiators show an anti-panic efficacy similar to alprazolam.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)152-161
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Psychopharmacology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2013



  • alprazolam
  • anti-panic drugs
  • anxiety
  • CBiPES
  • GABA
  • glutamate receptor
  • hypertension
  • hypothalamus
  • panic
  • pre-clinical study
  • social interaction
  • sodium lactate
  • stress
  • tachycardia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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