Degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra of zitter mutant rat and protection by chronic intake of Vitamin E

Shuichi Ueda, Shin Ichi Sakakibara, Kazuhiko Nakadate, Takahiro Noda, Motoo Shinoda, Jeffrey N. Joyce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Dopaminergic cell death in the ventral and dorsal tiers of substantia nigra pars copmacta (SNc) and their prevention by anti-oxidant diet was immunohistochemically studied in the zitter mutant rats, which are characterized by abnormal metabolism of superoxide. Similar to previous reports, the number of SNc neurons in Nissl-stained section decreased with age. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunohistochemistry demonstrated that the dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tier of SNc degenerated early, whereas the dorsal tier gradually degenerated with age. Thus, the ventral tier dopaminergic neurons are affected first, but the dorsal tier neurons do become impact by the zi/zi mutation. Following 9-month period after weaning, zitter rats supplemented with 500 mg d,l-α-tocophenol (VE(+))/kg diet exhibited a significant increased of surviving TH-immunoreactive neurons in both the tiers of SNc as compared with the zi/zi rats with control and VE(-) diets. These results suggest that VE supplement may slow the dopaminergic cell loss in zitter mutant rat, and further support that degeneration of the dopaminergic neurons in this mutant rat is caused by oxidant stress. Thus, the zitter rat may represent a good model for studying the dopaminergic cell death by superoxide species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)252-256
Number of pages5
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Volume380
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jun 3

Keywords

  • Dopamine
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Neuroprotection
  • Oxidant stress
  • Tyrosine hydroxylase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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