Background: The prevalence of methamphetamine (MA) use has increased in recent years. In
order to assess how this drug produces its effects, both clinical and preclinical studies have recently
begun to focus on oxidative stress as an important biochemical mechanism in mediating these effects.
Objective: The purpose of this review is to illustrate the variation in the design of preclinical studies
investigating MA exposure on oxidative stress parameters in animal models.
Method: The experimental variables investigated and summarised include MA drug treatment,
measurements of oxidative stress and antioxidant treatments that ameliorate the harmful effects of MA.
Results: These preclinical studies differ greatly in their experimental design with respect to the dose of
MA (ranging between 0.25 and 20 mg/kg), the dosing regime (acute, binge or chronic), the time of
measurement of oxidative stress (0.5 h to 2 wks after last MA administration), the antioxidant system
targeted and finally the use of antioxidants including the route of administration (i.p. or p.o.), the
frequency of exposure and the time of exposure (preventative or therapeutic).
Conclusion: The findings in this paper suggest that there is a large diversity among these studies and so
the interpretation of these results is challenging. For this reason, the development of guidelines and how
best to assess oxidative stress in animal models may be beneficial. The use of these simple
recommendations mean that results will be more comparable between laboratories and that future results
generated will give us a greater understanding of the contribution of this important biochemical
mechanism and its implications for the clinical scenario.