Parkinsoism Produced by an Endogenous Substance, Tetrahydroisoquinoline, in Monkeys and Mice
The discovery by Langston et al1. that 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), a side product of meperidine, produced symptoms quite similar to those of Parkinson’s disease in humans promoted research toward elucidation of the etiology of Parkinson’s disease. MPTP, however, can not be a causal substance to produce Parkinson’s disease, since MPTP does not exist in the natural environment. Barbeau et al2. suggested that paraquat, a herbicide having a similar chemical structure to MPTP, might cause Parkinson’s disease, since a high incidence of the disease was observed in an agricultural area where paraquat was used compared with that in other areas they surveyed. This suggestion, however, can not be true, as the disease had already been described 1817 by James Parkinson when such an industry product did not exist.
KeywordsSubstantia Nigra Similar Chemical Structure Levodopa Administration Tyrosine Hydroxylase Activity Nigrostriatal Neuron
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