This chapter explores the use of drugs for veterinary mental health care and behavior modification. It focuses on biogenic amine neurotransmitters. The term “biogenic amines, " as used in psychopharmacology, includes the two catecholamines dopamine and norepinephrine, and the indoleamine, 5-hydroxytryptamine. Serotonin was first chemically identified in the 1940s. Its presence in blood serum and platelets, and the fact that it exerted vasoconstrictor activity led to the derivation of the name “serotonin.” In the mammalian brain, serotonergic neurons are localized to clusters of cell bodies of the pons and brain stem termed the raphe nuclei. The function of serotonin is exerted upon its interaction with specific receptors. Serotonergic drugs such as fenfluramine have a different mechanism of action than the reuptake inhibitors. Serotonin pathways have also been shown to be involved in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Clomipramine was first shown to have efficacy in the treatment of OCD in 1980.
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