Local application of beta-phenylethylamine to the caudate nucleus of the rat elicits locomotor stimulation.
The behavioural effects of bilateral injections of beta-phenylethylamine (PEA) into the caudate nucleus of male rats were examined. PEA in doses of 200 and 300 micrograms increased locomotion with maximal stimulation being evident 15-25 min after injection. In addition 300 micrograms PEA increased rearing 20-25 min post injection and produced increases in sniffing. This is the first report of a behavioural stimulant effect of intracranially administered PEA without concurrent monoamine oxidase inhibition. The data suggest that the stimulant action of systemically administered PEA may be mediated, at least in part, by striatal mechanisms.