Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Low Doses Of Ecstasy Associated With Decline In Verbal Memory

Date:
June 5, 2007
Source:
JAMA and Archives Journals
Summary:
Even low doses of Ecstasy may be associated with a decline in language-related memory, according to a new report.

Even low doses of Ecstasy may be associated with a decline in language-related memory, according to a report in the June issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Related Articles


Ecstasy is an illicit recreational drug popular among young people, according to background information in the article. Research in both humans and animals suggests that the drug can harm the brain. Ecstasy may damage nerve cells that respond to the hormone serotonin, which is involved in mood, thinking, learning and memory.

Thelma Schilt, M.Sc., of the Academic Medical Center of the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and colleagues recruited 188 volunteers (average age 22) who had not used Ecstasy but reported that they were likely to try it soon. Within three years of the initial evaluations, which took place between April 2002 and April 2004, 58 individuals began using Ecstasy.

They were compared with 60 individuals who had the same age, sex and intelligence score but who did not use Ecstasy during the follow-up period. All participants took tests that assessed various types of memory--including attention, verbal memory for words and language, and visual memory for images--at the beginning and end of the study. Verbal memory was tested by memorizing a series of 15 words and repeating them immediately and again 20 minutes later.

"At the initial examination, there were no statistically significant differences in any of the neuropsychological test scores between persistent Ecstasy-naοve subjects and future Ecstasy users," the authors write. "However, at follow-up, change scores on immediate and delayed verbal recall and verbal recognition were significantly lower in the group of incident Ecstasy users compared with persistent Ecstasy-naοve subjects. There were no significant differences on other test scores."

In contrast to other studies, which have suggested that Ecstasy affects women more than men, there was no difference in the drug's effect between the sexes. Overall, test scores remained within the normal range for the general population.

The fact that Ecstasy appeared to affect only verbal memory points to specific brain areas and chemicals that may be affected by the drug, the authors note. "The main underlying factor seems to be a depletion of serotonin in Ecstasy users, a depletion that might be reversible," they write. "Serotonin is involved in several cognitive functions but might be especially relevant to learning and memory."

"In conclusion, our data indicate that low doses of Ecstasy are associated with decreased verbal memory function, which is suggestive for Ecstasy-induced neurotoxicity," the authors conclude. "Further research on the long-term effects of Ecstasy as well as on the possibility of additive effects of Ecstasy use on aging of the brain is needed."

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2007;64:728-736. 


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by JAMA and Archives Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

JAMA and Archives Journals. "Low Doses Of Ecstasy Associated With Decline In Verbal Memory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 June 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070604164938.htm>.
JAMA and Archives Journals. (2007, June 5). Low Doses Of Ecstasy Associated With Decline In Verbal Memory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 6, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070604164938.htm
JAMA and Archives Journals. "Low Doses Of Ecstasy Associated With Decline In Verbal Memory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070604164938.htm (accessed March 6, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, March 6, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Former NFL Players Donate Brains to Science

Former NFL Players Donate Brains to Science

Reuters - US Online Video (Mar. 3, 2015) — Super Bowl champions Sidney Rice and Steve Weatherford donate their brains, post-mortem, to scientific research into repetitive brain trauma. Jillian Kitchener reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alzheimer's Protein Plaque Found In 20-Year-Olds

Alzheimer's Protein Plaque Found In 20-Year-Olds

Newsy (Mar. 3, 2015) — Researchers found an abnormal protein associated with Alzheimer&apos;s disease in the brains of 20-year-olds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

This Nasal Treatment Could Help Ease Migraine Pain

Newsy (Mar. 2, 2015) — Researchers gave lidocaine to 112 patients, and about 88 percent of the subjects said they needed less migraine-relief medicine the next day. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) — Margaret Duffy of the University of Missouri talks about her study on the social network and the envy and depression that Facebook use can cause. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins