The present study demonstrates that ethanol and related alcohols possess a unique pharmacological property which distinguishes these compounds from other narcotics such as the barbiturates and opioids. Respiratory depression was used as the major pharmacological parameter since the changes induced by opioids, alcohols or barbiturates on pH and pCO2 of mouse blood can be readily compared. Our results indicate that while adrenergic agonists can diminish respiratory depression induced by ethanol, a serotonergic mechanism appears to be the major mediator for this depressant effect. Serotonergic mediation of respiratory depression seems restricted to a series of homologous alcohols. Opioids and barbiturates do not display this requirement.
Respiratory Depression Chloral Hydrate Intracerebral Injection Narcotic Drug Respiratory Depressant
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