[3H]Dihydrotetrabenazine, a new marker for the visualization of dopaminergic denervation in the rat striatum

Neurosci Lett. 1990 Jun 22;114(1):45-50. doi: 10.1016/0304-3940(90)90426-a.


[3H]Dihydrotetrabenazine ([3H]TBZOH), a derivative of the monoamine depleting agent, tetrabenazine, has been shown to bind to the vesicular monoamine transporter. We studied the effect of unilateral nigral lesion with 6-hydroxydopamine on [3H]TBZOH binding in the striatum by means of quantitative autoradiography. Topographical analysis of striatal [3H]TBZOH binding showed in control rats a pattern similar to the known distribution of dopaminergic innervation, and allowed to visualize dopaminergic denervation in lesioned rats. A good correlation was found between striatal [3H]TBZOH binding levels and tyrosine hydroxylase activities in similar areas on adjacent slices following 6-OHDA lesions with varying severity. These data reveal that autoradiography of [3H]TBZOH binding is a good index for the visualization and quantitation of dopaminergic nerve terminals integrity in the striatum.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autoradiography
  • Corpus Striatum / drug effects
  • Corpus Striatum / metabolism
  • Corpus Striatum / pathology*
  • Denervation*
  • Dopamine / physiology*
  • Hydroxydopamines / toxicity
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Oxidopamine
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Reference Values
  • Substantia Nigra / physiology
  • Tetrabenazine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Tetrabenazine / metabolism
  • Tritium
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase / metabolism


  • Hydroxydopamines
  • Tritium
  • dihydrotetrabenazine
  • Oxidopamine
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase
  • Dopamine
  • Tetrabenazine