MPTP administration induces a fairly selective lesion of substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons both in animals and humans.
This characteristic of MPTP has led to the best available model of Parkinson's disease and neuronal degenerations. MPTP toxicity is actually provoked by MPP+ which results after oxidation by MAO-B. Possible mechanism of action of MPP+ include: 1) Mitochondrial lesion. 2) Free radicals generation. 3) Trapping of MPP+ by highly melanized neurons. This article reviews the mechanisms of toxicity by MPTP and its neuropathological characteristics.
CITATION Arch Neurobiol (Madr). 1992 Jul-Aug;55(4):175-82
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