Serotonin receptor antagonism of alcohol intake: Effects of drinking conditions

D. L. McKinzie, R. Eha, R. Cox, R. B. Stewart, W. Dyr, J. M. Murphy, W. J. McBride, L. Lumeng, T. K. Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Scopus citations


The effects of 5-HT3 receptor antagonists on ethanol intake were examined in the selectively bred alcohol-preferring P line of rats under continuous and limited access to 10% (v/v) ethanol with food and water ad lib. Single daily injections of either MDL 72222 (MDL) or ICS 205-930 (ICS) (0.01-3.0 mg/kg, SC) given 60 min before a 4-h scheduled access period for 4 consecutive days failed at all doses to alter the intake of a 10% (v/v) ethanol solution by P rats. However, multiple daily injections of either MDL (1-3 mg/kg, SC) or ICS (3.0 and 5.0 mg/kg, SC), given three times daily at 4- h intervals, significantly reduced ethanol intake under 24-h free-choice conditions on the first treatment day. Additionally, a single administration of 1.0 mg/kg MDL reduced 24-h free-choice ethanol intake by approximately 50% of control values and had no effect on 24-h saccharin intake. The effects of MDL were further examined in a 2-h schedule access paradigm in which rats received the access period at the same time every day (Fixed) or randomly during the dark cycle (Variable). Although 1.0 mg/kg MDL had little effect on ethanol drinking in the Fixed group, ethanol intake was reduced by 55% of control levels in the Variable group. Overall, the data indicate that drinking conditions influence the effectiveness of 5-HT3 antagonists to reduce ethanol consumption. Furthermore, the results suggest that conditions, associated with limited access ethanol drinking, markedly reduce the actions of 5-HT3 antagonists on ethanol intake.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-298
Number of pages8
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1 1998


  • 5-HT antagonists
  • Alcohol drinking conditions
  • Alcohol-preferring rats
  • ICS 205-930
  • MDL 72222

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Medicine(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Toxicology
  • Health(social science)

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  • Cite this

    McKinzie, D. L., Eha, R., Cox, R., Stewart, R. B., Dyr, W., Murphy, J. M., McBride, W. J., Lumeng, L., & Li, T. K. (1998). Serotonin receptor antagonism of alcohol intake: Effects of drinking conditions. Alcohol, 15(4), 291-298.