Treatment with d-amphetamine produced a dose-dependent increase in startle amplitude in response to a buzzer. This increase appeared to be a reflection of a sensitization effect, i.e., enhanced responsivity as a function of repeated stimulus presentations. Treatment with α-methyl-p-tyrosine, which reduced whole brain concentrations of dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine (NE), or treatment with FLA-63, which reduced only NE, antagonized the effects of d-amphetamine on the startle reflex, suggesting a role of NE in this behavior. Startle amplitude was also reduced following chronic d-amphetamine treatment. The effect of d-amphetamine on startle was found to be independent of changes in drug-induced locomotor excitation. The data of the present investigation, together with earlier reports, suggests that tolerance occurs to those behaviors that involve a noradrenergic component.

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Carleton University

Kokkinidis, L. (Larry), & Anisman, H. (1978). Involvement of norepinephrine in startle arousal after acute and chronic d-amphetamine administration. Psychopharmacologia, 59(3), 285–292. doi:10.1007/BF00426636