2018 SfN Smith et al. MDMA IVSA
There is resurgent interest in developing psychedelic drugs, eg 5-HT2A agonists, NMDA antagonists and κ-opioid agonists, to treat serious psychiatric and neurological disorders. For example, the FDA recently granted breakthrough status to the schedule 1 controlled drug, MDMA, for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The abuse potential of most psychedelic drugs has not been systematically investigated, and furthermore, all novel psychedelic compounds developed as drugs for human use need to have their reinforcing potential determined as part of the CNS Safety Pharmacology package. Since there are relatively few published studies describing the reinforcing effects of MDMA in rats, we investigated whether MDMA served as positive reinforcer in heroin-maintained rats and its relative reinforcing effect.