Almost fifteen years of research with Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) have led to a profound understanding of the relationships between antipsychotic doses and plasma levels on the one hand and occupancy of (striatal) D2-like dopamine receptors on the other hand as well as with the associated clinical effects and side effects. Furthermore, with the development of clinically "atypical" antipsychotics PET studies helped to generate hypotheses regarding the essential pharmacological properties of this heterogeneous class of drugs. Possible mechanisms of action include combined D 2-/5-HT2 antagonism, preferential mesolimbic binding, and fast dissociation from the D2-receptor. Our recently published PET study on the in vivo characterization of the partial dopamine receptor agonist, aripiprazole, suggests a novel mechanism of action, which leads to clinically "atypical" properties of an antipsychotic. Aripiprazole, of which the antipsychotic efficacy has been proven in various multicenter clinical trials, leads to almost complete saturation of D2-like dopamine receptors at clinically used doses; however, the incidence of extrapyramidal side effects under aripiprazole is not higher than under placebo. PET like no other method is suitable to display in vivo a novel mechanism of "atypicality" of a new class of antipsychotics.
|Translated title of the contribution||The next generation of "atypical" antipsychotics: The role of positron emission tomography|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Fortschritte der Neurologie Psychiatrie|
|State||Published - Aug 1 2003|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Psychiatry and Mental health