Post-mortem changes of neurotransmitter concentrations in the rat brain regions

Acta Physiol Hung. 1990;75(3):179-85.


Using High Performance Liquid Chromatography coupled with electrochemical detection the post-mortem stability of noradrenaline (NA), dopamine (DA), serotonin (5-HT) and 5-hydroxy indole acetic acid (5-HIAA) were examined in the rat hypothalamus, amygdala, cerebral cortex, cerebellum and corpus striatum over an 8 hour time period. Changes in concentrations of the different neurotransmitters were less than it might be expected. The significant changes were: a. A fall in NA levels in the cerebral cortex by 4 hours and in the hypothalamus at 8 hours. b. A reduction in DA concentrations in the corpus striatum at 8 hours but a two fold rise of levels in the hypothalamus at 1 and 2 hours. c. A four-fold increase in 5-HT concentrations in the amygdala throughout the 8 hours studied. The results indicate that for comparative studies on post-mortem brain tissue correction factors should be employed to take into account differential changes in the concentrations of the various neurotransmitters.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Neurotransmitter Agents / metabolism*
  • Postmortem Changes*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains


  • Neurotransmitter Agents