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Chapter 6

Chapter 6 psychopharmacology textbook notes

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSY 402
Professor
Tara M Burke
Semester
Fall

Description
Chapter 6: Serotonin Serotonin synthesis • Serotonin = 5­hydroxytryptamine (5­HT) • Synthesis – Trytophan (precursor) • Converted by tryptophan hydroxylase – To 5­hydroxytryptophan (5­HTP) • Converted by aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (AADC) – To 5­hydroxytryptamine (5­HT) • The first step is the rate limiting step. – Takes the longest • Like we talked about with dopamine – Thus, tryptophan hydroxylase is the rate limiting enzyme • Only serotonergic neurons contain this enzyme. • Thus, labeling for tryptophan hydroxylase is one way to identify  serotonergic neurons • Also notice that the enzyme in the second step is the same for catecholamines and  indolamines – Aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (AADC) Turkey Dinner effect… • Although many people believe that increasing tryptophan in the diet can increase  serotonin levels, it is more complicated than that. ­ Turkey dinner effect – not true • The ratio of tryptophan to other large amino acids determines the rate that  tryptophan enters the brain ­ Competition for crossing the blood brain barrier. • Consequently it is high carbohydrate and low protein diets that increases brain  tryptophan levels ­ Insulin release is stimulated by high carb diet. ­ Insulin causes most amino acids to be removed from the blood stream. ­ But not tryptophan ­ Less competition for tryptophan, means that more crosses the BBB • Tryptophan depletion can cause the return of depressive symptoms in patients that  have recovered from depression. – Indication of serotonin’s role in mood regulation. ­ What enzyme? MAO breaks down 5­HT ­ COMT won’t break down serotonin  Some drugs can cause release, independent of action potentials • Amphetamine like drugs – Para­choloroamphetamine • Dr
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