Send to

Choose Destination
Life Sci. 2003 Jun 20;73(5):617-26.

Effects of dopamine agonists bromocriptine, pergolide, cabergoline, and SKF-38393 on GDNF, NGF, and BDNF synthesis in cultured mouse astrocytes.

Author information

Clinical Research Center, Utano National Hospital, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto 616-8255, Japan.


We examined the stimulatory effects of the dopamine agonists bromocriptine, pergolide, cabergoline, and SKF-38393 on the synthesis and secretion of neurotrophic factors (nerve growth factor, NGF; brain-derived neurotrophic factor, BDNF; and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor, GDNF) in cultured mouse astrocytes, and clarified the role of dopamine D1 and D2 receptors in these effects. Bromocriptine, a D2 agonist, elevated NGF levels in the culture medium 6.8-fold vs. control, and significantly decreased GDNF and BDNF levels, at 24 h. Both pergolide, a D1/D2 agonist, and cabergoline, a D2/weak D1 agonist, rapidly elevated NGF and GDNF levels at 4-6 h, respectively to 21- and 1.5-fold, respectively, and 84- and 9-fold, respectively, of control levels at 24 h. SKF-38393, a D1 agonist, elevated NGF and GDNF levels to 20- and 2.8-fold of controls, respectively, at 24 h. Relative levels of NGF and GDNF mRNA detected by Northern blot analysis or semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction confirmed that increases in levels of the 2 proteins in culture medium were due to overexpression as opposed to leakage from cells. Cabergoline rapidly increased GDNF mRNA expression at 4 h, producing a potent and long-lasting increase in GDNF levels. Bromocriptine significantly suppressed GDNF synthesis. These findings suggest that stimulation of dopamine D1 receptors may be required for GDNF synthesis and secretion, and that concurrent stimulation of dopamine D1 and D2 receptors may augment synthesis and secretion of NGF and GDNF. These dopamine agonists may play a role in neuronal survival by stimulating NGF and GDNF synthesis in the brain, and as drugs are good candidates as NGF and GDNF inducers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center