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Pak J Pharm Sci. 2008 Jan;21(1):7-11.

Subchronic treatment with mercuric chloride suppresses immune response, elicits behavioral deficits and increases brain serotonin and dopamine metabolism in rats.

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Department of Biochemistry, Neurochemistry and Biochemical Neuropharmacology Unit, University of Karachi, Karachi.


In view of the neurotoxic effects of mercuric chloride the following study was designed to explore its effects on brain serotonin and dopamine metabolism. Mercuric chloride injected at a dose of 1 mg/ml/kg increased locomotor activity, decreased latency to move, corner sittings and food intake. A decrease of 33% of immune response was observed in mercuric chloride treated rats as evident from anti nuclear antibody (ANA) positive test. Neurochemical analysis revealed that mercuric chloride administration increased brain tryptophan concentrations 5-Hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) and dihydroxyphenyl acetic acid, while 5-Hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) and Dopamine (DA) were decreased. The results also showed an increase in brain 5-HT and DA turnover rate in mercuric chloride injected rats. These increases in 5-HT and DA metabolism suggest that mercuric chloride may tend to contribute to anorexia and hyperactivity induced in drug administered rats.

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