An abuse liability comparison of flunitrazepam and triazolam in sedative drug abusers

Miriam Z. Mintzer, R. R. Griffiths

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The present double-blind, placebo-controlled study compared the acute effects of oral administration of the benzodiazepine hypnotics flunitrazepam (6 mg/70 kg) and triazolam (1 and 2 mg/70 kg) on measures relevant to abuse liability as well as on psychomotor performance and observer- and participant-rated measures of drug effects in nine sedative drug abusers. Analysis of participant-rated measures collected 24 h after drug administration (next-day; assessing the overall effects of the drug received 24 h earlier) indicated that flunitrazepam, but neither triazolam dose, produced significant increases relative to placebo in next-day ratings of drug liking, the amount of money the drug would be worth on the street, and the amount of money the participant would be willing to pay for the drug on the street Importantly, these abuse liability differences between flunitrazepam and triazolam were present at a dose of flunitrazepam (6 mg/70 kg) that produced overall drug effects that were comparable to, or significantly less than, those of a high triazolam dose (2 mg/70 kg). Consistent with results of a previous study in our laboratory, these results suggest that flunitrazepam may have a greater abuse liability than triazolam, and that this abuse liability difference emerges on measures taken 24 h after drug administration but not on same-day measures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)579-584
Number of pages6
JournalBehavioural Pharmacology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • Abuse liability
  • Benzodiazepine
  • Flunitrazepam
  • Human
  • Hypnotic
  • Triazolam

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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