Cortical glutamate levels decrease in a non-human primate model of dopamine deficiency

X. T. Fan, F. Zhao, Y. Ai, A. Andersen, P. Hardy, F. Ling, G. A. Gerhardt, Z. Zhang, J. E. Quintero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


While Parkinson's disease is the result of dopaminergic dysfunction of the nigrostriatal system, the clinical manifestations of Parkinson's disease are brought about by alterations in multiple neural components, including cortical areas. We examined how 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) administration affected extracellular cortical glutamate levels by comparing glutamate levels in normal and MPTP-lesioned nonhuman primates (Macaca mulatta). Extracellular glutamate levels were measured using glutamate microelectrode biosensors. Unilateral MPTP-administration rendered the animals with hemiparkinsonian symptoms, including dopaminergic deficiencies in the substantia nigra and the premotor and motor cortices, and with statistically significant decreases in basal glutamate levels in the primary motor cortex on the side ipsilateral to the MPTP-lesion. These results suggest that the functional changes of the glutamatergic system, especially in the motor cortex, in models of Parkinson's disease could provide important insights into the mechanisms of this disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-40
Number of pages7
JournalBrain Research
StatePublished - Mar 13 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by National Institutes of Health [ NS39787 and NS50242 ]. We thank Dr. Don M. Gash for his help in experimental design and support and Dr. Richard Grondin for behavioral testing.


  • Cortical
  • Glutamate
  • MPTP
  • Microelectrode array
  • Parkinson's

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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