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Ricaurte GA, Yuan J, Hatzidimitriou G, Cord BJ, McCann UD. 
“Severe Dopaminergic Neurotoxicity in Primates After a Common Recreational Dose Regimen of MDMA (�Ecstasy�)”. 
Science. 2002;297:2260-2263.
NOTE: Retracted by authors, September 2003.

The prevailing view is that the popular recreational drug ()3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, or "ecstasy") is a selective serotonin neurotoxin in animals and possibly in humans. Nonhuman primates exposed to several sequential doses of MDMA, a regimen modeled after one used by humans, developed severe brain dopaminergic neurotoxicity, in addition to less pronounced serotonergic neurotoxicity. MDMA neurotoxicity was associated with increased vulnerability to motor dysfunction secondary to dopamine depletion. These results have implications for mechanisms of MDMA neurotoxicity and suggest that recreational MDMA users may unwittingly be putting themselves at risk, either as young adults or later in life, for developing neuropsychiatric disorders related to brain dopamine and/or serotonin deficiency.
Comments and Responses to this Article
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Apr 17, 2011 1:59
The Ricaurte Error #

This ended up being a firestorm inside NIDA and in the wider world of drug-abuse-ology. It is one of the worst examples of rushing to publication and skewed science that has characterized the Drug War Science over the last 50 years and the worst in the last 10.

See Major Error in Ecstasy Research from Sep 2003. See also The (Pseudo-) Science of the War on Drugs.
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