Striatal MPP+ levels do not necessarily correlate with striatal dopamine levels after MPTP treatment in mice

Francesca Vaglini, Flavia Fascetti, Daniele Tedeschi, Micaela Cavalletti, Francesco Fornai, Giovanni U. Corsini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study offers confirmation of the fact that an MAO-B inhibitor, (-) deprenyl and a DA uptake blocker, GBR-12909, prevent MPTP induced striatal DA decrease. This protective effect is accompanied by an almost complete prevention of MPP+ production induced by (-) deprenyl and an accelerated MPP+ clearance induced by GBR-12909 within the striatum. Similarly, the MPTP toxicity enhancers, DDC and acetaldehyde, both increase striatal MPP+ levels, as previously reported. On the contrary, the treatment with MK 801, although uneffective in preventing the long-term MPTP-induced striatal DA decrease, causes an increase in the striatal amount of MPP+. In a similar way, the administration of nicotine in combination with MPTP produces a significant increase in the levels of striatal MPP+, which does not elicit any effect on striatal DA. The effect of clonidine is consistent with these results and in sharp contrast with the current belief that a direct relationship exists between striatal MPP+ concentrations and the degree of MPTP-induced depletion of striatal DA. In this study, using different treatments, we failed to confirm the correlation between MPP+ striatal levels and dopaminergic lesions after MPTP administration in mice. We suggest that this correlation is not a rule and exceptions may depend on a different compartimentalization of the toxic metabolite.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-136
Number of pages8
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1996


  • Dopamine
  • MPP
  • MPTP
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Nicotine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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