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Thermoregulatory effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in humans.
Psychopharmacology (Berl) 2005; 183(2):248-56P

Abstract

RATIONALE

Although 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA; Ecstasy) has been reported to cause fatal hyperthermia, few studies of the effects of MDMA on core body temperature in humans have been conducted demonstrating increased body temperature. In rats, MDMA causes hyperthermia at warm ambient temperatures but hypothermia at cold ones.

OBJECTIVES

In this study, the physiological and subjective effects of MDMA in humans were determined at cold (18 degrees C) and warm (30 degrees C) ambient temperatures in a temperature and humidity-controlled laboratory.

METHODS

Ten healthy volunteers who were recreational users of MDMA were recruited. Four laboratory sessions were conducted in a 2x2 design [i.e., two sessions at 30 degrees C and two at 18 degrees C, two during MDMA (2 mg/kg, p.o.) and two during placebo, in double-blind fashion]. Core body temperature (ingested radiotelemetry pill), skin temperature (four weighted sites), heart rate, blood pressure, metabolic rate (indirect calorimetry), shivering (electromyogram levels), and sweat rate (capacitance hygrometry) were measured as well as subjective effects for several time periods following capsule ingestion.

RESULTS

MDMA produced significant elevations in core body temperature and metabolic rate in both warm and cold conditions. MDMA also produced significant elevations in blood pressure and heart rate and significantly increased several ratings of subjective effects similar to those previously reported. There were no differences related to ambient temperature for any of the subjective effects, except that ratings of cold and warm were appropriate to the ambient temperature and were not influenced by MDMA.

CONCLUSIONS

Unlike findings in rats, MDMA increased core body temperature regardless of ambient temperature in humans. These increases appeared related to increases in metabolic rate, which were substantial. These findings warrant further investigations on the role of MDMA and other stimulants in altering metabolism and thermogenesis.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA. aa2613@wayne.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Clinical Trial
Comparative Study
Journal Article
Randomized Controlled Trial
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

16163516

Citation

Freedman, Robert R., et al. "Thermoregulatory Effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in Humans." Psychopharmacology, vol. 183, no. 2, 2005, pp. 248-56.
Freedman RR, Johanson CE, Tancer ME. Thermoregulatory effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in humans. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2005;183(2):248-56.
Freedman, R. R., Johanson, C. E., & Tancer, M. E. (2005). Thermoregulatory effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in humans. Psychopharmacology, 183(2), pp. 248-56.
Freedman RR, Johanson CE, Tancer ME. Thermoregulatory Effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in Humans. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2005;183(2):248-56. PubMed PMID: 16163516.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Thermoregulatory effects of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) in humans. AU - Freedman,Robert R, AU - Johanson,Chris-Ellyn, AU - Tancer,Manuel E, Y1 - 2005/11/09/ PY - 2005/05/17/received PY - 2005/07/18/accepted PY - 2005/9/16/pubmed PY - 2006/4/14/medline PY - 2005/9/16/entrez SP - 248 EP - 56 JF - Psychopharmacology JO - Psychopharmacology (Berl.) VL - 183 IS - 2 N2 - RATIONALE: Although 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA; Ecstasy) has been reported to cause fatal hyperthermia, few studies of the effects of MDMA on core body temperature in humans have been conducted demonstrating increased body temperature. In rats, MDMA causes hyperthermia at warm ambient temperatures but hypothermia at cold ones. OBJECTIVES: In this study, the physiological and subjective effects of MDMA in humans were determined at cold (18 degrees C) and warm (30 degrees C) ambient temperatures in a temperature and humidity-controlled laboratory. METHODS: Ten healthy volunteers who were recreational users of MDMA were recruited. Four laboratory sessions were conducted in a 2x2 design [i.e., two sessions at 30 degrees C and two at 18 degrees C, two during MDMA (2 mg/kg, p.o.) and two during placebo, in double-blind fashion]. Core body temperature (ingested radiotelemetry pill), skin temperature (four weighted sites), heart rate, blood pressure, metabolic rate (indirect calorimetry), shivering (electromyogram levels), and sweat rate (capacitance hygrometry) were measured as well as subjective effects for several time periods following capsule ingestion. RESULTS: MDMA produced significant elevations in core body temperature and metabolic rate in both warm and cold conditions. MDMA also produced significant elevations in blood pressure and heart rate and significantly increased several ratings of subjective effects similar to those previously reported. There were no differences related to ambient temperature for any of the subjective effects, except that ratings of cold and warm were appropriate to the ambient temperature and were not influenced by MDMA. CONCLUSIONS: Unlike findings in rats, MDMA increased core body temperature regardless of ambient temperature in humans. These increases appeared related to increases in metabolic rate, which were substantial. These findings warrant further investigations on the role of MDMA and other stimulants in altering metabolism and thermogenesis. SN - 0033-3158 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/16163516/Thermoregulatory_effects_of_34_methylenedioxymethamphetamine__MDMA__in_humans_ L2 - https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00213-005-0149-6 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -