The effect of l-deprenyl on behavior, cognitive function, and biogenic amines in the dog

N. W. Milgram, G. O. Ivy, E. Head, M. P. Murphy, P. H. Wu, W. W. Ruehl, P. H. Yu, D. A. Durden, B. A. Davis, I. A. Paterson, A. A. Boulton

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46 Scopus citations


Behavioral and pharmacological effects of oral administration of l-deprenyl in the dog are described. Spontaneous behavior is unaffected at doses below 3 mg/kg while at higher doses there was stereotypical responding. There was evidence of improved cognitive function in animals chronically treated with a 1 mg/kg dose but the effectiveness varied considerably between subjects. Chronic administration produced a dose dependent inhibition in brain, kidney and liver monoamine oxidase B, and had no effect on monoamine oxidase A. There were also dose dependent increases in brain phenylethylamine and in plasma levels of amphetamine. Dog platelets did not have significant levels of MAO-B. Brain dopamine and serotonin metabolism were unaffected by l-deprenyl at doses up to 1 mg/kg. It appears that for the dog, deamination of catecholamines is controlled by MAO-A. Nevertheless, it is suggested that l-deprenyl serves as a dopaminergic agonist, and there is also evidence that it affects adrenergic transmission. These catecholaminergic actions may account for the effects of l-deprenyl on behavior and cognitive function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1211-1219
Number of pages9
JournalNeurochemical Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1993


  • cognitive function
  • dog
  • dopamine
  • l-Deprenyl
  • monoamine oxidase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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