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Methylphenidate (MPD), commonly known as Ritalin, is widely prescribed for the treatment of ADHD and is also an abused drug. Although MPD stimulant therapy is effective for the symptoms of ADHD, little is known about the long-term developmental consequences of adolescent MPD exposure, especially for those who have been misdiagnosed or are abusing this potent dopamine agonist. Since, the mechanism of action of MPD is similar to that of Methamphetamine (METH), this study examined the relationship between adolescent MPD exposure and cross-sensitization to METH in adulthood. Crosssensitization refers to a heightened drug response upon subsequent exposure to a drug with a similar mechanism of action. Since these drugs are psychostimulants, which cause motor activation, we tested this hypothesis using an open field chamber to assess locomotor activity. Given the sexual dimorphic development of the DAergic systems in mice, we predicted a more pronounced effect of METH to female mice pretreated with MPD. Our data supports a long-lasting effect of MPD on cross-sensitization to METH in adulthood, which is more pronounced in female mice. Faculty Advisers: Steven Lloyd and Ryan Shanks.


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  • Event location
    • Library Technology Center Open Classroom 269

  • Event date
    • 28 March 2012

  • Date submitted

    18 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Steven Lloyd and Ryan Shanks