Author(s): Kirik D, Rosenblad C, Bjrklund A
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Abstract Partial lesions of the nigrostriatal dopamine system have been investigated with respect to their ability to induce consistent long-lasting deficits in movement initiation and skilled forelimb use. In eight different lesion groups 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) was injected at one, two, three, or four sites into the lateral sector of the right striatum, in a total dose of 20-30 microgram. Impairments in movement initiation in a forelimb stepping test, and in skilled paw use in a paw-reaching test, was seen only in animals where the severity of the lesion exceeded a critical threshold, which was different for the different tests used: single (1 x 20 microgram) or two-site (2 x 10 microgram) injections into the striatum had only small affects on forelimb stepping, no effect on skilled paw use. More pronounced deficits were obtained in animals where the same total dose of 6-OHDA was distributed over three or four sites along the rostro-caudal extent of the lateral striatum or where the injections were made close to the junction of the globus pallidus. The results show that a 60-70\% reduction in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive fiber density in the lateral striatum, accompanied by a 50-60\% reduction in TH-positive cells in substantia nigra (SN), is sufficient for the induction of significant impairment in initiation of stepping. Impaired skilled paw-use, on the other hand, was obtained only with a four-site (4 x 7 microgram) lesion, which induced 80-95\% reduction in TH fiber density throughout the rostrocaudal extent of the lateral striatum and a 75\% loss of TH-positive neurons in SN. Drug-induced rotation, by contrast, was observed also in animals with more restricted presymptomatic lesions. The results indicate that the four-site intrastriatal 6-OHDA lesion may be a relevant model of the neuropathology seen in parkinsonian patients in a manifest symptomatic stage of the disease and may be particularly useful experimentally since it leaves a significant portion of the nigrostriatal projection intact which can serve as a substrate for regeneration and functional recovery in response to growth promoting and neuroprotective agents. Copyright 1998 Academic Press.
This article was published in Exp Neurol
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy