Effects of tianeptine and mianserin on car driving skills
Ridout F, Hindmarch I.
HPRU Medical Research Centre, University of Surrey,
Egerton Road, Guildford GU2 5XP, UK.
[email protected]
Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2001 Apr;154(4):356-61.


RATIONALE: Tianeptine is a novel antidepressant which enhances the reuptake of serotonin (5-HT). Previous studies suggest that tianeptine has a non-sedative side-effect profile, but its effects on everyday activities including car driving have not been fully explored. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effects of tianeptine on tests related to car driving performance. METHOD: Sixteen healthy volunteers received acute doses of tianeptine 12.5 mg and 37.5 mg, mianserin 30 mg and placebo in a double blind four-way crossover study. The effects of treatment on self assessed ratings of sedation (LARS), two valid and reliable laboratory performance measures, critical flicker fusion (CFF) and choice reaction time (CRT) and an "on-the-road" measure of one aspect of car driving performance, brake reaction time (BRT) were examined. The BRT test was administered at baseline and at 1.5, 3, 4.5 and 6 h post-dose, while LARS, CFF and CRT were administered at baseline and at 1, 2, 4 and 5 h post-dose. For all data, the maximum change from baseline was calculated and used in the analysis. RESULTS: Tianeptine had no measurable effect on performance, compared to placebo, on any of the variables investigated. Compared to placebo, mianserin was shown to lower CFF thresholds (P = 0.01), increase reaction times on both the CRT (P = 0.001) and the BRT (P = 0.01) tests and was subjectively rated as more sedative than placebo (P = 0.01). CONCLUSION: The apparent lack of counter-therapeutic side-effects produced by an acute dose of tianeptine suggest that it may be a suitable antidepressant for use in an ambulant population.

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