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Evaluation of antidepressant and memory-improving efficacy of aripiprazole and fluoxetine in alcohol-preferring rats

  • Kinga Burda-Malarz (a1), Krzysztof Kus (a1), Piotr Ratajczak (a1), Anna Czubak (a1), Elżbieta Nowakowska (a1), Łukasz Jędrzejewski (a1) and Czesław Sadowski (a2)...
Introduction and aims

Dependence on ethanol increases the risk of depression in patients and leads to a damage and deficiencies of brain function, which manifest in cognitive functions impairment. Aripiprazole (ARI) is an atypical antipsychotic drug, which has also been shown to have a beneficial effect on cognitive function. Results of many studies show that, for ARI's antidepressant effect to manifest itself, it is necessary to use a combined therapy with a drug from the group of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). The aim of this paper was to assess the antidepressant and impact of ARI on spatial memory in alcohol-preferring rats (EtNPRs).

Design and methods

In our study, we used Porsolt's forced swimming test (antidepressant effect) and Morris water maze test. The tests have been conducted upon administration of ARI (6 mg/kg i.p.), fluoxetine (FLX; 5 mg/kg p.o.) and combined administration of both drugs in alcohol-dependent rats.


The results of behavioural tests carried out have shown a lack of antidepressant and procognitive effects of either ARI or FLX in EtPRs after acute and chronic treatment. Combined administration of both drugs would lead to spatial memory deterioration in the study animals.

Discussion and conclusions

Our results suggest that ARI applied in the experiment had no antidepressant effect and failed to improve spatial memory in study rats. Potential antidepressant and procognitive properties of this drug resulting from its mechanism of action encourage attempts (design) of further research aimed at developing a dose, which will show such effects in alcohol-preferring animals.

Corresponding author
Dr. Kinga Burda-Malarz, Department of Pharmacoeconomics and Social Pharmacy, University of Medical Sciences in Poznań, Dąbrowskiego 79, PL 60-529 Poznań, Poland. Tel: +480618546920; Fax: +480618546894; E-mail:
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Acta Neuropsychiatrica
  • ISSN: 0924-2708
  • EISSN: 1601-5215
  • URL: /core/journals/acta-neuropsychiatrica
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