Antidepressant activity of the adenosine A2A receptor antagonist, istradefylline (KW-6002) on learned helplessness in rats.Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2014 Jul; 231(14):2839-49.P
Istradefylline, an adenosine A2A receptor antagonist, improves motor function in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD) and in patients with PD. In addition, some A2A antagonists exert antidepressant-like activity in rodent models of depression, such as the forced swim and the tail suspension tests.
We have investigated the effect of istradefylline on depression-like behaviors using the rat learned helplessness (LH) model.
Acute, as well as chronic, oral administration of istradefylline significantly improved the inescapable shock (IES)-induced escape deficit with a degree of efficacy comparable to chronic treatment with the tricyclic antidepressant desipramine and the selective serotonin (5-HT) reuptake inhibitor, fluoxetine. Both the A1/A2A receptor nonspecific antagonist theophylline and the moderately selective antagonist CGS15943, but not the A1 selective antagonist DPCPX, ameliorated the IES-induced escape deficit. The enhancement of escape response by istradefylline was reversed by a local injection of the A2A specific agonist CGS21680 either into the nucleus accumbens, the caudate-putamen, or the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus, but not by the A1 specific agonist R-PIA into the nucleus accumbens. Moreover, neither the 5-HT2A/2C receptor antagonist methysergide or the adrenergic α 2 antagonist yohimbine, nor the β-adrenergic antagonist propranolol, affected the improvement of escape response induced by istradefylline.
Istradefylline exerts antidepressant-like effects via modulation of A2A receptor activity which is independent of monoaminergic transmission in the brain. Istradefylline may represent a novel treatment option for depression in PD as well as for the motor symptoms.