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The immunophilin ligand FK506 protects against methamphetamine-induced dopaminergic neurotoxicity in mouse striatum

, : The immunophilin ligand FK506 protects against methamphetamine-induced dopaminergic neurotoxicity in mouse striatum. Neuropharmacology 48(3): 391-397

Repeated use of methamphetamine (MAP) is known to cause neurotoxicity in the dopaminergic neurons of the striatum. Recently, we reported that FK506, a calcineurin inhibitor and immunosuppressive agent, could attenuate acute behavioral changes and the development of sensitization after administration of MAP. In this study, we investigated the effects of FK506 on the neurotoxicity in the dopaminergic neurons induced by repeated administration of MAP. BALB/c mice were injected subcutaneously (s.c.) with vehicle (10 ml/kg) or MAP (4 mg/kg) four times every 2 h. Vehicle (10 ml/kg) or FK506 (0.1, 0.3, 1 or 3 mg/kg i.p.) was administered 15 min before the first MAP administration. Three days later, we assessed the contents of dopamine (DA) and its major metabolite, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC), in the mouse striatum using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). We also examined the immunohistochemistry of dopamine transporter (DAT) and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in the mouse brain. Repeated administration of MAP decreased significantly the contents of DA and DOPAC in the mouse striatum, and pretreatment with FK506 inhibited significantly the reduction of DA and DOPAC in the mouse brain by repeated administration of MAP. Furthermore, repeated administration of MAP decreased significantly the immunoreactivity of DAT and TH in the striatum as compared to controls. Pretreatment with FK506 (3 mg/kg) attenuated significantly the reduction of DAT and TH immunoreactivity after repeated administration of MAP. These results suggest that FK506 shows protective effects on the MAP-induced neurotoxicity in the dopaminergic neurons of the mouse striatum. (c) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


PMID: 15721171

DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2004.10.015

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