Serum haloperidol levels in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome

H. S. Singer, P. Rabins, L. E. Tune, J. T. Coyle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


The present study has demonstrated that Tourette patients therapeutically respond to remarkably low levels of haloperidol. These results lend support to the hypothesis of a supersensitive dopaminergic receptor site as the pathophysiologic defect in Tourette syndrome. Of interest is the unusual sensitivity of the Tourette patient's receptors to butyrophenone blockade. This unique property produces both a therapeutic response as well as an increased tendency toward dysphoric side effects. Recent studies have demonstrated three separate dopaminergic receptor sites: Type 1, a haloperidol-insensitive adenylate-cyclase-related postynaptic receptor; Type 2, a haloperidol-sensitive postsynaptic receptor and a presynaptic autoreceptor. The authors speculate that the response of Tourette patients to drug therapy is based upon changes at the Type 2 receptor, although the possibility still exists that haloperidol might be altering dopaminergic transmission through blockade of presynaptic autoreceptors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-84
Number of pages6
JournalBiological psychiatry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1981

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry


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