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J Neural Transm Gen Sect. 1993;91(2-3):255-69.

Glutamate-dopamine interactions in the basal ganglia: relationship to Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Neurology, University of Rochester, NY.


Current antiparkinsonian therapies focus on either replacing dopamine via precursor (L-DOPA) administration, or directly stimulating post-synaptic dopamine receptors with dopamine agonists. Unfortunately, this approach is associated with numerous side effects and these drugs lose efficacy with disease progression. This article reviews recent evidence which suggests that negative modulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission has antiparkinsonian effects in a variety of rodent and primate models of parkinsonism. The pronounced synergism between dopaminergic agents and glutamate receptor antagonists may provide a means of using very low doses of the two drug classes in concert to treat Parkinson's disease effectively and minimize dose-related drug side effects.

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