Unilateral striatal lesion and complete medial forebrain bundle (MFB) lesion by 6-hydroxydopamine in rats have been widely used as Parkinson disease (PD) models. However, the difference of pre- and post-synaptic dopamine (DA) system in these two models are not well concerned. In order to investigate the pathophysiologic difference between the MFB lesion rats and striatal lesion rats, we studied the variation of pre-synaptic DA transporter and post-synaptic D(2)-like receptor in nigrostriatal DA system using binding assay, behavioral test and a small animal PET. Our data showed that there was a same tendency of the striatal DA transporter decrease both in MFB lesion rats and striatal lesion rats 4 weeks after lesion, however, it showed increase (up-regulation) of D(2)-like receptor in the MFB lesion rats, whereas showed decrease (down-regulation) in the striatal lesion rat. This finding strongly indicated the different dynamic pathophysiologic process between the MFB lesion model and striatal lesion model. MFB lesion model mimics an early stage of PD, whereas striatal lesion model mimics Parkinson syndrome, such as vascular Parkinson syndrome. Such difference should be taken into account in the selection of these model systems.
2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.