Chromosomal loci influencing the susceptibility to the Parkinsonian neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine

Marco Sedelis, Katja Hofele, Rainer K.W. Schwarting, Joseph P. Huston, John K. Belknap

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the dysfunction of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic pathway. Although its etiology is not yet fully understood, an interaction of genetic predisposition and environmental factors is frequently discussed. The neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) can evoke PD-like symptoms and neuropathological changes in various species, including mice. It was found repeatedly that mouse strains differ in their susceptibility to MPTP, which might serve as a model for genetic predisposition to neurodegeneration of the nigrostriatal system. In the present study, F2 intercross mice, derived from parental strains with high (C57BL/6J) versus low (BALB/cJ) MPTP susceptibility, were treated with MPTP and phenotyped for dopamine (DA) loss in the neostriatum, a highly sensitive marker of nigrostriatal dysfunction. A subsequent quantitative trait loci analysis revealed a gender-dependent locus for DA loss on chromosome 15 and a putative locus on chromosome 13. A number of potential candidate genes, including the membrane dopamine transporter, are located in the respective areas. Several mechanisms that are possibly involved in the control of the action of MPTP on the nigrostriatal system are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8247-8253
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number23
StatePublished - Sep 10 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Basal ganglia
  • Dopamine
  • F intercross
  • Inbred strains
  • MPTP
  • Mouse
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Quantitative trait loci

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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