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Neurosci Lett. 1998 May 15;247(2-3):99-102.

Progressive accumbens degeneration after neonatal striatal 6-hydroxydopamine in rats.

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  • 1Consolidated Department of Psychiatry and Neuroscience Program, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.


Parkinson's disease is associated with progressive loss of nigrostriatal dopamine (DA). Models of the disorder, produced with neurotoxins (N-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine or 6-hydroxydopamine) that selectively lesion DA neurons, are characterized by acute removal and gradual recovery of DA. We report slowly progressive loss of DA in ipsilateral nucleus accumbens following profound (>90%) acute unilateral depletion of DA in the caudate-putamen of neonatal rats, from 50% at age 27 days to 94% by 100 days. Metabolic turnover of DA markedly increased in ipsilateral accumbens, and may yield tissue-damaging neurotoxic by-products. This paradigm may help in elucidating mechanisms responsible for gradual degeneration of DA neurons and for screening potential neuroprotective agents.

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