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Nutr Metab. 1980;24(6):417-23.

L-dopa competes with tyrosine and tryptophan for human brain uptake.


Tyrosine and tryptophan have been assayed spectrofluorometrically in postmortem human brain areas of patients with Parkinson's disease treated orally with or without 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-dopa) plus the peripherally acting decarboxylase inhibitor benserazide. Tyrosine as well as tryptophan decrease significantly after treatment with L-dopa, thus showing a competitive action of L-dopa to other aromatic amino acids on human brain uptake. It is suggested that some of the side effects of L-dopa treatment in Parkinson's disease are due to a disturbance in the brain and neural uptake of other, specially aromatic and branched-chain amino acids. An influence of L-dopa administration on protein synthesis also cannot be excluded.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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