The impact of nandrolone decanoate on the central nervous system

Francesco P. Busardò, Paola Frati, Mariantonia Di Sanzo, Simona Napoletano, Enrica Pinchi, Simona Zaami, Vittorio Fineschi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nandrolone is included in the class II of anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) which is composed of 19-nor-testosterone-derivates. In general, AAS is a broad and rapidly increasing group of synthetic androgens used both clinically and illicitly. AAS in general and nandrolone decanoate (ND) in particular have been associated with several behavioral disorders. The purpose of this review is to summarize the literature concerning studies dealing with ND exposure on animal models, mostly rats that mimic human abuse systems (i.e. supraphysiological doses). We have focused in particular on researches that have investigated how ND alters the function and expression of neuronal signaling molecules that underlie behavior, anxiety, aggression, learning and memory, reproductive behaviors, locomotion and reward.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-131
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Neuropharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Aggression
  • Anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS)
  • Anxiety
  • Learning and memory
  • Nandrolone decanoate (ND)
  • Neurological effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology
  • Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Medicine(all)


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