Age-Dependent Effects of 1-Methyl-4-Phenyl-1,2,3,6-Tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) in the Rat
1-Methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) causes a Parkinsonian syndrome in humans and monkeys which is accompanied by degeneration of dopamine containing neurones in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNC) and extensive loss of dopamine in the striatum (for review see Langston, 1987). Rats are much less sensitive to the neurotoxicity of MPTP than primates. Systemic administration of MPTP to rats did not produce neurotoxic effects (Chiueh et al., 1984) and intranigral administration failed to induce lasting damage to the SNC neurones (Chiueh et al., 1984; Bradbury et al., 1986) or lasting behavioural effects (Welzl and Lange, 1986). The neurotoxicity of MPTP seems to be age-dependent. It has been demonstrated that old mice suffer more extensive neuronal damage in the SNC than younger animals in response to MPTP administration (Gupta et al., 1986). The present experiment studied the age-dependent effects of unilateral intranigral administration of MPTP in the rat.
KeywordsNigrostriatal Dopamine MPTP Administration MPTP Injection Striatal Dopamine Depletion Lasting Damage
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