Oscillations in neuronal networks are assumed to serve various physiological functions, from coordination of motor patterns to perceptual binding of sensory information. Here, we describe an ultra-slow oscillation (0.025 Hz) in the hippocampus. Extracellular and intracellular activity was recorded from the CA1 and subicular regions in rats of the Wistar and Sprague-Dawley strains, anesthetized with urethane. In a subgroup of Wistar rats (23%), spontaneous afterdischarges (4.7+/-1.6 s) occurred regularly at 40.8+/-15.7 s. The afterdischarge was initiated by a fast increase of population synchrony (100-250 Hz oscillation; "tonic" phase), followed by large-amplitude rhythmic waves and associated action potentials at gamma and beta frequency (15-50 Hz; "clonic" phase). The afterdischarges were bilaterally synchronous and terminated relatively abruptly without post-ictal depression. Single-pulse stimulation of the commissural input could trigger afterdischarges, but only at times when they were about to occur. Commissural stimulation evoked inhibitory postsynaptic potentials in pyramidal cells. However, when the stimulus triggered an afterdischarge, the inhibitory postsynaptic potential was absent and the cells remained depolarized during most of the afterdischarge. Afterdischarges were not observed in the Sprague-Dawley rats. Long-term analysis of interneuronal activity in intact, drug-free rats also revealed periodic excitability changes in the hippocampal network at 0.025 Hz. These findings indicate the presence of an ultra-slow oscillation in the hippocampal formation. The ultra-slow clock induced afterdischarges in susceptible animals. We hypothesize that a transient failure of GABAergic inhibition in a subset of Wistar rats is responsible for the emergence of epileptiform patterns.
Cholinergic inputs from the basal forebrain to cortex exert profound effects on cortical activities, such as a rhythmic synchronization. For these modulatory effects inhibitory interneurons could play crucial roles within the cortical circuitry. To study cholinergic modulation of GABA-mediated inhibition, we recorded inhibitory postsynaptic current (IPSC) during application of cholinergic agonists in the rat frontal cortex in vitro. Both carbachol and muscarine caused two temporally different patterns of IPSC modulation in both pyramidal cells and inhibitory interneurons: tonic or periodic increase of GABA-A receptor-mediated inhibition. The tonic pattern showed a continuous increase of IPSC frequency, while the periodic increase manifested itself as rhythmic (0.1-0.3 Hz, mean 0.2 Hz) bursts of IPSC (frequency: 6-69 Hz, mean 24 Hz; burst duration: 1.2-4.3 s, mean 2.2 s). Both types of increase were suppressed by atropine or pirenzepine, muscarinic-receptor antagonists. The periodical IPSC bursts were not affected by antagonists for ionotropic glutamate receptors. Following cholinergic stimulation, periodic IPSC bursts in nearby cells were synchronized as a whole, but individual inhibitory events within the bursts were not always temporally correlated, suggesting synchronized depolarizations of several presynaptic interneurons. It has been revealed that slow rhythmic depolarizations accompanying spike firing can be generated within the cortex. In addition to this periodic excitation of cortical circuits, these results indicate that cortical inhibitory interneurons have their own acetylcholine-dependent mechanism generating the slow rhythm independent of the excitatory circuits.
Two regions in the forebrain of domestic chicks (Gallus domesticus), the intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale and the lobus parolfactorius, have previously been shown to be important centres of biochemical, pharmacological and physiological change following one-trial passive avoidance training. The purpose of the present study was to examine, at the electron microscopic level, the fine spatial re-arrangement of synaptic structures in the intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale (at 30 min), and in the lobus parolfactorius (at 24 h), post-training using comprehensive biometrical designs, image analysis and stochastic approaches. In intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale, no significant differences in the numerical density of synapses either between control and trained chicks, or between hemispheres, were revealed using the disector method. However, after training, a nested-ANOVA demonstrated an increase in the thickness of pre- and post-synaptic electron densities (estimated via image analysis) only in the left intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale, whereas synaptic apposition zone profiles increased in length bilaterally. In presynaptic terminals from the intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale, stochastic analysis revealed that training resulted in the re-distribution of synaptic vesicles between two spatial pools relative to synaptic apposition zones, in both hemispheres producing a large number of synaptic vesicles closer to synaptic apposition zones; a nearest neighbour analysis of synaptic apposition zone profiles indicated that the lateral shape of the synaptic apposition zone after training is more complex in both hemispheres. In the lobus parolfactorius at 24 h post-training the main changes in synaptic fine structure involved a shift of synaptic vesicles away from synaptic apposition zones in the right hemisphere with the distance between synaptic apposition zones decreasing; in the left lobus parolfactorius, synaptic apposition zones became more regular/round in shape with a greater distance between them after training. These data suggest that the initial acquisition of memory involves population changes in the fine spatial organization of synaptic vesicles and synaptic apposition zones in synapses in the intermediate and medial hyperstriatum ventrale, which indicate a possible tendency towards greater synaptic efficacies. These changes are as dynamics as the molecular changes which have hitherto been considered the preserve of short-term correlates of memory formation.
Responses to injury in the ageing hippocampus were assessed utilizing the synaptic markers glial fibrillary acidic protein and synaptosomal-associated protein (mol. wt 25,000) following administration of the neurotoxin, 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine, into the fimbria-fornix and cingulum bundle to denervate serotonergic afferent input to the dorsal hippocampus. Age-dependent alterations in hippocampal immunohistochemical localization of glial fibrillary acidic protein and synaptosomal-associated protein were evaluated in female Fischer 344 rats following serotonergic deafferentation with 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine. Across the lifespan, as indicated by measurements taken at three, 18, 21 and 29 months, marked increases in glial fibrillary acidic protein, but not synaptosomal-associated protein immunoreactivity, occurred throughout the hippocampus at 21 and 29 months compared to three and 18 months. Following three weeks pretreatment with 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine (20 microg total dose) or vehicle (0.1% ascorbic saline; 2 microl total volume) infused in the fimbria-fornix/cingulum bundle, immunohistochemical analysis demonstrated marked increases of glial fibrillary acidic protein, but not synaptosomal-associated protein, in the 18-month 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine group compared to the 18-month vehicle and 3-month 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine groups. Additionally, a significant increase in glial fibrillary acidic protein concentration was found by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in the 18-month 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine group compared to the 18-month vehicle and three-month 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine groups. These results demonstrate that selective neurotoxicant damage of the hippocampal serotonergic system differentially alters the expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein. This approach may provide a valuable tool to determine the ability of the hippocampus to respond to age-related neurodegenerative injury.
Glutamate dehydrogenase is one of the main enzymes involved in the formation and metabolism of the neurotransmitter glutamate. In the present study we investigated the enzyme ultrastructurally in the cerebellar cortex, a region rich in well defined glutamatergic neurons, by pre-embedding immunocytochemical staining (peroxidase-antiperoxidase), as well as by post-embedding immunogold labelling employing a new system for quantitation and for specificity testing under the conditions of the immunocytochemical procedure. A new antiserum against immunologically purified bovine liver glutamate dehydrogenase or antibodies isolated from this by affinity chromatography were used in rats fixed by perfusion with aldehydes.
The present study was designed to evaluate the possible neuroprotective effects of metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR7) allosteric agonist N,N'-dibenzhydrylethane-1,2-diamine dihydrochloride (AMN082) on developmental sevoflurane neurotoxicity. To achieve the objective, hippocampal cultures (7 DIV, 7 day in vitro) were treated with different doses of L-(+)-2-amino-4-phosphonobutyric acid (L-AP4, an agonist of group III mGluRs), (RS)-α-Methylserine-O-phosphate (MSOP, an antagonist of group III mGluRs), AMN082 or cis-2-[[(3,5-dichlorophenyl)amino]carbonyl]cyclohexanecarboxylic acid (VU0155041, an agonist of mGluR4) before exposed to sevoflurane. Cell apoptosis were determined by flow cytometry and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end-labeling (TUNEL)-staining. For in vivo study, rat pups (7 PND, 7 postnatal day) were injected with AMN082, L-AP4 or saline before sevoflurane exposure. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2), c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), p38, caspase-3, Bcl-2, and Bax were detected by Western blot. The locomotor activity and cognitive functions were evaluated by open-field test and Morris water maze (MWM), respectively. We found that L-AP4 prevented sevoflurane-induced cell apoptosis, but MSOP promoted. Specially, application of AMN082 contributed to the relief of sevoflurane-induced apoptosis in vitro, whereas VU0155041 did not. In addition, sevoflurane treatment led to a decrease of Bcl-2 and an increase of caspase-3 and Bax, which were mitigated by AMNO82 in vivo. Moreover, we showed that sevoflurane treatment resulted in a remarkable suppression of phospho-ERK1/2, which was restored by AMN082. Application of U0126 (an inhibitor of MEK) abolished the neuroprotective effects of AMN082 on sevoflurane neurotoxicity both in vitro and in vivo. In addition, sevoflurane exposure also led to an increase of phospho-JNK, but SP600125 (an inhibitor of JNK) did not attenuate sevoflurane-induced apoptosis. The total and phosphorylated p38 remained unchanged in sevoflurane-treated rat pups. Finally, AMN082 improved the learning and memory defects caused by postnatal sevoflurane exposure without alternations in emotion or locomotor activity. These preliminary data indicate that AMN082 may protect immature brain against sevoflurane neurotoxicity, and the ERK1/2 MAP kinase signaling is likely to be involved. Further studies are needed to fully assess the neuroprotective role of mGluR7 agonist AMN082 in developmental anesthetic neurotoxicity.
The aim of the present in vivo microdialysis study was to investigate whether prenatal exposure to the CB(1) receptor agonist WIN55,212-2 mesylate (WIN; (R)-(+)-[2,3-dihydro-5-methyl-3-(4-morpholinyl-methyl)pyrrolo[1,2,3-de]-1,4-benzoxazin-6-yl]-1-naphthalenylmethanone), at a dose of 0.5 mg/kg (s.c. from the fifth to the 20th day of gestation), that causes neither malformations nor overt signs of toxicity, influences cortical glutamate extracellular levels in adult (90-day old) rats. Dam weight gain, pregnancy length and litter size at birth were not significantly affected by prenatal treatment with WIN. Basal and K(+)-evoked dialysate glutamate levels were lower in the cerebral cortex of adult rats exposed to WIN during gestation than in those born from vehicle-treated mothers. In both group of animals WIN (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) increased dialysate glutamate levels. However, while the blockade of the CB1 receptors with the selective receptor antagonist SR141716A completely counteracted the WIN-induced increase in those rats exposed to vehicle during gestation, it failed to antagonise the increase in those born from WIN-treated dams. These findings suggest that prenatal exposure to the CB1 receptor agonist WIN, at a concentration which is not associated with gross malformations and/or overt signs of toxicity, induces permanent alterations in cortical glutamatergic function. The possibility that these effects might underlie, at least in part, some of the cognitive deficits affecting the offspring of marijuana users is discussed.
In response to injury, endogenous precursors in the adult brain can proliferate and generate new neurons, which may have the capacity to replace dysfunctional or dead cells. Although injury-induced neurogenesis has been demonstrated in animal models of stroke, Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Huntington's disease (HD), studies of Parkinson's disease (PD) have produced conflicting results. In this study, we investigated the ability of adult mice to generate new neurons in response to the parkinsonian toxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), which causes selective degeneration of nigrostriatal dopamine neurons. MPTP lesions increased the incorporation of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine-5'-monophosphate (BrdU), as well as the number of cells that co-expressed BrdU and the immature neuronal marker doublecortin (DCX), in two neuroproliferative regions-the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus (DG) and the rostral subventricular zone (SVZ). BrdU-labeled, DCX-expressing cells were not found in the substantia nigra (SN) of MPTP-treated mice, where neuronal cell bodies are destroyed, but were present in increased numbers in the striatum, where SN neurons lost in PD normally project. Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), which enhances neurogenesis in a mouse model of HD, also increased the number of BrdU/DCX-immunopositive cells in the SN of MPTP-treated mice. Thus, MPTP-induced brain injury increases striatal neurogenesis and, in combination with FGF-2 treatment, also stimulates neurogenesis in SN.
We performed a combined neurochemical and behavioral study to determine the effects of 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline (1-BnTIQ) on the extracellular dopamine concentrations in the striatum. Single dose administration of 1-BnTIQ (20, 40, and 80 mg/kg i.p.) increased striatal dopamine extracellular levels in a dose-dependent manner when an in vivo microdialysis technique was used to assess dopamine levels in the striatum of rats. Enhancement of striatal dopamine levels by systemic administration of a single dose of 1-BnTIQ was suppressed by perfusion of tetrodotoxin and a calcium ion-free solution into the striatum. This 1-BnTIQ-induced increase in extracellular dopamine concentration was also inhibited by pre-treatment with a dopamine uptake inhibitor, GBR12909 (1-(2-[bis(4-Fluorophenyl)-4-(3-phenylpropyl)piperazine dihydrochloride). Local application of 1-BnTIQ into the striatum via a dialysis probe failed to enhance the extracellular concentration of dopamine. However, microinjection of 1-BnTIQ into the substantia nigra pars compacta increased the extracellular dopamine levels in the striatum. Locomotor activity was increased by systemic administration of a single dose of 1-BnTIQ in a dose-dependent manner. This 1-BnTIQ-induced locomotor activity was attenuated by pre-treatment with SCH23390 (R(+)-7-Chloro-8-hydroxy-3-methyl-1-phenyl-2,3,4,5-tetrahydro-1H-3-benzazepine hydrochlodride) and raclopride, D(1) and D(2) dopaminergic receptor antagonists, respectively. Moreover, 1-BnTIQ induced ipsilateral rotational behavior in 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats. These results suggest that systemic administration of a single dose of 1-BnTIQ increases striatal extracellular dopamine concentration through activation of dopaminergic nigra striatal neurons via the dopamine transporter.
Organotypic slice co-culture of the ventromedial portion of the mesencephalon and striatum was used to evaluate the neurotoxicity of 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline, an endogenous brain amine related to Parkinson’s disease. 1-Benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline is specifically increased in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with Parkinson’s disease and induces parkinsonian features in the monkey and mouse. Here, it decreased the dopamine content of the cultured mesencephalon in both dose- (10–100 μM) and time- (24 h to 7 days) dependent manners. This result suggests that the neurotoxicity of 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline is correlated with the overall exposure (concentration multiplied by exposure time). Culture with 100 μM 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline for 24 h irreversibly reduced the dopamine content. Furthermore, culture with 100 μM 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline for 10 days caused morphological changes, including cell body shrinkage and distortion of dendritic morphology, in tyrosine hydroxylase-positive cells in the mesencephalon and reduced the number of cells by half. The increase in lactate dehydrogenase activity in the media produced by 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline was significant in culture of the mesencephalon alone or its co-culture with striatum, but not in cultures of other brain regions. We suggest that 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline is toxic to tyrosine hydroxylase-positive cells in the ventral mesencephalon and that it is correlated with the integral of the concentration by time of exposure. Thus a low concentration of 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline may first induce a decrease in the dopamine content then shrinkage of the cell body, followed by the slow death of dopaminergic neurons over a long period. This is the first report that indicates 1-benzyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline exerts neurotoxicity at the cellular level, and reveals in part the character of its neurotoxicity.
The effect of acute administration of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline, an endogenous substance suspected of producing Parkinsonism in humans, on the levels of glutathione and reactive oxygen species and on the enzymatic activity of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase was investigated in the substantia nigra, striatum and cortex of rat brain. Four hours after a single dose of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline (100 mg/kg i.p.), a significant increase in tissue glutathione level was found in the dopaminergic structures studied. The most pronounced effect was observed in the substantia nigra and cortex, and the weakest in the striatum. At the same time, significant inhibition of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase was observed in the substantia nigra, cortex and striatum whose extent strictly corresponded to the increase in glutathione levels in those structures. Moreover, in 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline-treated rats, the production of reactive oxygen species was significantly reduced in the substantia nigra, whereas it was markedly enhanced in the striatum.Our results suggest that the increase in tissue glutathione level in the dopaminergic structures studied results from inhibition of gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase and refers to the extracellular pool of this peptide. Moreover, it is likely that both the 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline-induced alterations in glutathione level and the enhanced production of reactive oxygen species in the striatum may have implications for the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.
The finding that endogenous tetrahydroisoquinolines may be involved in the etiology of Parkinson's disease suggests that their administration may cause changes resembling those observed in parkinsonian brain. We tested, using a high-performance liquid chromatography method, how single and chronic administration of 1,2, 3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline and salsolinol affects dopamine and serotonin metabolism in the neurons of extrapyramidal and mesolimbic dopaminergic systems. We report that chronic administration of tetrahydroisoquinoline and salsolinol causes a decrease in a dopamine metabolism: the effect of tetrahydroisoquinoline was limited to the striatum, while salsolinol caused also a dramatic decline of dopamine level in the substantia nigra. The effect of both compounds on serotonin metabolism was small or absent. The tetrahydroisoquinolines produced no changes in the nucleus accumbens. The results indicate that tetrahydroisoquinoline and salsolinol specifically affect the nigrostriatal dopamine system, but only when administered chronically, and thus are compatible with the view that endogenous tetrahydroisoquinolines may participate in pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.
The effects of acute and chronic administration of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline, an endogenous substance suspected of producing parkinsonism in humans, on the muscle tone and metabolism of dopamine in the striatum, and on the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive cells in the substantia nigra were investigated in rats. Muscle tone was examined using a combined mechanomyographic and electromyographic method which measured simultaneously the muscle resistance of the rat's hind foot to passive extension and flexion in the ankle joint and electromyographic activity of the antagonistic muscles of that joint: gastrocnemius and tibialis anterior. 1,2,3,4-Tetrahydroisoquinoline administered at doses of 50 and 100 mg/kg intraperitoneally for 19 days increased muscle resistance 1 h after the first injection (acute treatment), 1 h after the last injection (chronic treatment) and three days after compound withdrawal. Rigidity observed on the third day of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline withdrawal was accompanied by an increased tonic (resting) electromyographic activity of the gastrocnemius and tibialis anterior muscles. At the same time, a significant reduction in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive neurons in the substantia nigra and a decrease in the dopamine level in the striatum were also found. A declining number of tyrosine hydroxylase-immunoreactive neurons in the whole substantia nigra showed a significant negative correlation with the enhanced muscle resistance, as well as with the tonic electromyographic activity recorded at rest, i.e. before the start of movements, from the gastrocnemius and tibialis anterior muscles. Our results suggest that 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline may be one of the endogenous substances involved in the progress of Parkinson's disease.
Administration of the neurotoxin, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine, to primates produces an excellent behavioral model of idiopathic Parkinson's disease. In the vervet monkey, regional biochemical differences in the striatum of two 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated groups were examined one to two months after treatment and compared with controls; one group displayed no observable gross motor abnormalities after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine treatment (asymptomatic), whereas the other group became markedly parkinsonian (symptomatic). In both 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated groups massive depletions of dopamine and homovanillic acid concentrations were observed in the striatum; generally, dopamine losses in the symptomatic group (greater than 95%) were greater than in the asymptomatic group (greater than 75%). However, in striatum, a marked heterogeneity in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine susceptibility was found; certain striatal regions having 99% depletion of dopamine even in asymptomatic monkeys. Overall, in ventromedial regions of striatum the losses of dopamine and homovanillic acid concentrations were less than in dorsolateral regions at the same coronal level. There was a significant negative correlation between control homovanillic acid/dopamine ratios and susceptibility of examined regions to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine toxicity. Unlike idiopathic, but similar to postencephalitic, Parkinson's disease, dopamine and homovanillic acid levels in caudate nucleus were not spared relative to putamen; in fact, in the asymptomatic group caudate nucleus dopamine and homovanillic acid concentrations were depleted to a greater extent than in putamen.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder whose etiology is thought to have environmental (toxin) and genetic contributions. The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyrimidine (MPTP) induces pathological features of PD including loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) and striatal dopamine (DA) depletion. We previously described the striatal transcriptional response following acute MPTP administration in MPTP-sensitive C57BL/6J mice. We identified three distinct phases: early (5h), intermediate (24h) and late (72h) and reported that the intermediate and late responses were absent in MPTP-resistant Swiss-Webster (SWR) mice. Here we show that C57BL/6J mice pre-treated with a single 40 mg/kg dose of MPTP and treated 9 days later with 4×20 mg/kg MPTP, display a striatal transcriptional response similar to that of MPTP-resistant SWR mice, i.e. a robust acute response but no intermediate or late response. Transcriptional refractoriness is dependent upon the dose of the priming challenge with as little as 10mg/kg MPTP being effective and can persist for more than 28 days. Priming of SWR mice has no effect on their response to subsequent challenge with MPTP. We also report that paraquat, another free radical producer, also elicits striatal transcriptional alterations but these are largely distinct from those triggered by MPTP. Paraquat-induced changes are also refractory to priming with paraquat. However neither paraquat nor MPTP elicits cross-attenuation. Thus exposure to specific toxins triggers distinct transcriptional responses in striatum that are influenced by prior exposure to the same toxin. The prolonged refractory period described here for MPTP could explain at the molecular level the reported discrepancies between different MPTP administration regimens and may have implications for our understanding of the relationship between environmental toxin exposure and PD.
The therapeutic potential of BL-1023, a chemical combination of L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), was investigated in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) intoxicated mice. Such animals exhibit nigrostriatal degeneration, characteristic of human Parkinson's disease. Drug was administered during and after the development of MPTP-induced nigrostriatal lesions followed by measures of motor function and behavior, surviving nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons and termini, and striatal dopamine levels. When administered after lesion development, BL-1023 improved motor function of MPTP-mice as measured by rotarod, total floor and vertical plane movements, and stereotypic movements in open field activity tests compared to MPTP-mice without treatment. This also paralleled modest nigral dopaminergic neuronal protection. Such significant improvements in motor function, behaviors, and dopaminergic neuronal numbers were not seen when BL-1023 was administered during MPTP-induced lesion development. The data demonstrate select abilities of BL-1023 to increase dopaminergic neuronal survival and improve motor function in MPTP-mice.
Parkinson's disease is associated with the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and decreased striatal dopamine levels. We now report that caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), an active component of propolis, attenuated dopaminergic neurodegeneration and dopamine loss in the MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine) mouse model of Parkinson's disease. The neuroprotective effect of CAPE was associated with marked reductions in inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and caspase 1 expression. Additionally, CAPE inhibited MPP+-induced neurotoxicity in vitro and directly inhibited MPP+-induced release of cytochrome c and apoptosis inducing factor (AIF) from mitochondria. Thus, CAPE may have beneficial effects in slowing or preventing the progression of Parkinson's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.
Six monkeys treated with 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine developed a Parkinsonian syndrome (rigidity, akinesia, flexed posture and tremor). In both high and low dose groups, neurons in the substantia nigra were selectively damaged. At high dose levels, nigral neurons were severely damaged, but because the monkeys died, the evolution of the pathology could not be studied. At low dose levels, some nigral neurons survived, and a significant number of these nerve cells showed reductions in the immunoreactivity of tyrosine hydroxylase. Axonal pathology was conspicuous in the nigrostriatal pathway. Loss of the immunoreactivity of tyrosine hydroxylase in perikarya may represent a retrograde axonal reaction, a potentially reversible response. The 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine model should prove useful for investigating abnormalities occurring as a consequence of dysfunction of the nigrostriatal system, for examining processes associated with repair of damaged neuronal systems, and for developing and testing therapeutic approaches designed to prevent or ameliorate the Parkinsonian syndrome.
The vesicular monoamine transporter in the brain can sequester the neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium into synaptic vesicles and protect catecholamine-containing neurons from degeneration. Mouse nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons, and to a lesser extent locus coeruleus noradrenergic neurons, are vulnerable to toxicity produced by 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine. The present study sought to determine whether pharmacological inactivation of the vesicular monoamine transporter in the brain would enhance the degeneration of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons and locus coeruleus noradrenergic neurons in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-treated animals. Mice were treated subacutely with 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine alone, or in combination with vesicular monoamine transporter inhibitors (tetrabenazine or Ro4-1284), and 10–24 days later striatal dopamine and cortical norepinephrine levels were measured using chromatographic methods. In the same animals, substantia nigra and locus coeruleus catecholaminergic neurons were counted using tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemical staining with computer imaging techniques. Mice in which pharmacological blockage of the vesicular monoamine transporter enhanced the effects of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine toxicity in the depletion of striatal dopamine concentrations also exhibited enhanced degeneration of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons. In the same animals, however, vesicular monoamine transporter blockade did not enhance the effects of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine in the locus coeruleus noradrenergic system.
The behavioural, biochemical and morphological effects of a chronic administration of low doses of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) were studied in the common marmoset. Monkeys received the toxin (l mg/kg i.p.) twice a week for four months. Group A monkeys were studied one week after the last injection of MPTP; group B monkeys were studied eight months after the last toxic injection. The monkey behaviour was observed throughout the experiment; the biochemical and morphological correlates were studied post mortem in the neostriatum and in the substantia nigra, respectively. Data collected from MPTP-treated marmosets were compared to those obtained from sham-injected control monkeys. The results can be summarized as follows. (1) In all MPTP-treated marmosets a progressive Parkinsonism occurred. In group B monkeys, a gradual behavioural recovery was observed after MPTP was discontinued. (2) Biochemical analysis of group A marmosets showed a depletion of dopamine, of 3,4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid and of homovanillic acid, and no variations in dopamine turnover in the neostriatum of MPTP-treated marmosets. In group B, biochemical analysis showed no differences between controls and MPTP-treated animals. (3) Morphological analysis showed that the density of midbrain dopaminergic neurons located in the substantia nigra was unchanged in group A monkeys, but was reduced by 6.8% in MPTP-treated monkeys of group B. The measurement of cross-sectional area showed that midbrain dopaminergic neurons were swollen in MPTP-treated monkeys of group A, with a 11.0% increase of cell size as compared to controls. In group A the nuclei were also swollen, being 304.8% larger in MPTP-treated monkeys, with a nucleus-to-cytoplasm ratio of 65.9% (as compared to 34.0% of controls). In group B monkeys cell size was increased by 18.4% in MPTP-treated marmosets, but the nuclei were of comparable size.
The neurotoxic effects of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine on dopamine neurons in monkeys were found to be reduced when the catecholamine uptake inhibitor nomifensine was administered during several weeks after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine. The obtained protection was partial, leading to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-induced changes in dopamine levels to 8, 16, 52 and 59% of control values in the caudate nucleus and to 10, 16, 101 and 99% in the putamen of four animals, respectively. At the same doses, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine alone is known to deplete striatal dopamine levels to 0.5–7% of control values. Extra-nigrostriatal monoamine neurons were generally well protected by nomifensine. Neurological examinations revealed modest hypokinesia for a maximum of 10 days after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine in the two more severely affected animals. Reaction times of arm and eye movements were measured in a formal task in two of the monkeys having a moderate and a more important depletion of striatal dopamine, respectively. Only moderate impairments were seen during the initial 2 weeks after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine in both animals. All parameters recovered to control levels thereafter. At 3.5 and 5.5 months after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine, task performance was significantly better than control. The speed of arm movement remained largely unaffected during all periods of experimentation. Spontaneous eye movements were reduced in frequency and amplitude during the initial 1–2 weeks after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine, and recovered completely thereafter.
Administration of the drug 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine induces a parkinsonian syndrome in primates. Intraperitoneal injections of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) produced symptoms of rigidity, akinesia and tremor which persisted for at least one month. However, after this time, considerable behavioural recovery occurred, although animals were still severely bradykinetic compared with controls. Marmosets were allowed to survive for 1, 3 built12 or 7 months prior to histological and immunocytochemical analysis. Detection of catecholaminergic neurons using antibodies directed against the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase revealed a profound (80%) loss of dopaminergic cells from the substantia nigra one month after initiation of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine treatment. This was accompanied by a severe gliosis. Fewer cells were lost from the adjacent ventral tegmental area (45%), but dopamine-containing cells in other brain areas were not obviously affected. At longer survival times the substantia nigra was less damaged, with a proliferation of glia in the pars compacta and a loss of approximately 20% of the dopaminergic perikarya. Using immunohistochemical techniques, the distribution of neuropeptides substance P, [Met]enkephalin and dynorphin 1–17-like immunoreactivity were examined and found to exhibit distinctive patterns in the marmoset substantia nigra. The integrity of these systems appeared intact at all times after 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine treatment.
The use of animal models (including the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine [MPTP] mouse model) to mimic dopaminergic (DAergic) cell loss and striatal dopamine (DA) depletion, as seen in Parkinson's disease (PD), has implicated a multitude of factors that might be associated with DAergic cell death in PD including excitotoxicity, inflammation, and oxidative stress. All of these factors have been shown to be reduced by administration of histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors (HDACis) resulting in some degree of neuroprotection in various models of neurodegenerative disease including in Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, there is limited information of effects of HDACis in PD models. We have previously shown HDACis to be partially protective against 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+))-mediated cell loss in vitro. The present study was conducted to extend these findings to an in vivo PD model. The HDACi valproic acid (VPA) was co-administered with MPTP for 5 days to male FVBn mice and continued for an additional 2 weeks, throughout the period of active neurodegeneration associated with MPTP-mediated DAergic cell loss. VPA was able to partially prevent striatal dopamine depletion and almost completely protect against substantia nigra DAergic cell loss. These results suggest that VPA may be a potential disease-modifying therapy for PD.
Fourteen macaque monkeys were injected intravenously with N-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine. All developed the cardinal signs of parkinsonism (akinesia, rigidity, etc.) in varying degrees; some required repeated series of injections of the drug, while others developed the syndrome readily after the first series. Most of the subjects that were kept for longer than 4 weeks after the first dose of the drug showed complete or partial recovery after that time. Measurement, in some of the subjects, of the neostriatal levels of dopamine and dihydroxyphenylacetic acid showed the expected depletion of these substances at the peak of the behavioral action of the drug, but no recovery when the animals had returned to, or near, pre-drug behavioral status. No firm conclusion can be reached at this time as to the reasons for the behavioral recovery or the variability of the effects of the drug across subjects.
1-Methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) is a dopaminergic neurotoxin which inhibits mitochondrial complex I. 3-Nitropropionic acid (3-NPA) inhibits mitochondrial complex II and produces specific striatal lesions. In order to produce a combined striatal neuronal and dopaminergic afferent lesion, we administered both toxins simultaneously to the mouse. The combination brought about a lesion in the striatum that was not simply additive of the two combined toxins. Intriguingly, a group of striatal neurons became immunoreactive to tyrosine hydroxylase after day 1. Some of them were clearly visible up to the dendritic details. Immuno-electron microscopy indicated that the tyrosine hydroxylase-positive striatal neurons contained densely immunoreactive polyribosomes. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction analysis indicated the up-regulation of tyrosine hydroxylase mRNA in the treated striatum. These neurons were also immunoreactive to aromatic L-amino acid decarboxylase.We conclude that the combined administration of MPTP and 3-NPA caused a more profound damage to the nigro-striatal dopaminergic system, and thus some striatal neurons capable of up-regulating tyrosine hydroxylase were induced to produce dopamine, probably to compensate for the dopamine depletion.