p-Chloroamphetamine-Enhanced Neostriatal Dopamine Exocytosis in Rats Neonatally Co-lesioned with 6-OHDA and 5,7-DHT: Relevance to Parkinson’s Disease

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Serotoninergic nerves are known to modulate sensitization of dopamine receptors (DA-R) in a rodent model of Parkinson’s disease (PD). However, serotoninergic nerves are not known to have a prominent role on DA exocytosis in intact rats. The current study was undertaken to explore the possible influence of serotoninergic nerves on DA exocytosis in Parkinsonian rats. Rat pups were treated at 3 days after birth with the neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA; 134 μg icv, half into each lateral ventricle; desipramine, 1 h pretreatment), in order to produce marked long-lasting destruction of neostriatal dopaminergic innervation, as evidenced by the 90–95% depletion of DA (p < 0.001) [HPLC/ED] into adulthood. Controls received vehicle/desipramine in place of 6-OHDA. Other groups received the serotoninergic neurotoxin 5,7-dihydroxytryptamine (5,7-DHT; 25 μg base, icv, half in each lateral ventricle; desipramine, 1 h; 75 mg/kg pargyline HCl, 30 min) at 3 days post-birth; or both 6-OHDA+5,7-DHT treatments. In adulthood, an in vivo microdialysis study was undertaken to ascertain that p-chloroamphetamine (PCA, 1 mM in the microdialysate)-evoked DA release in the neostriatum was reduced approximately 50% in the 6-OHDA group, while PCA-evoked DA release in the 6-OHDA+5,7-DHT group was substantially increased, to a level equivalent to that of the vehicle control. The baseline neostriatal microdialysate level of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) was also higher in the 6-OHDA+5,7-DHT group vs 6-OHDA group; also, during the 2nd hour of PCA infusion. PCA-enhanced DA exocytosis occurred in the absence of changes in hydroxyl radical (HO·) in the microdialysate (i.e., assay of 2,3- and 2,5-dihydroxybenzoic acid, 2,3-DHBA; 2,5-DHBA). The overall findings demonstrate that an adulthood serotoninergic nerve lesion enhanced PCA-evoked DA exocytosis in a rodent model of severe PD, while susceptibility to oxidative stress was unchanged. The implication is that serotoninergic nerves may normally suppress the release of DA and/or act as an uptake site and storage sink for accumulated DA in parkinsonian-like neostriatum. Potentially, serotoninergic agonists or antagonists, targeting subtype-selective serotonin receptors, may be viable therapeutic adjuncts in PD.