Convection-enhanced delivery (CED) of GDNF and NTN was employed to determine the tissue clearance of these factors from the rat striatum and the response of the dopaminergic system to a single infusion. Two doses of GDNF (15 and 3 microg) and NTN (10 microg and 2 microg) were infused into the rat striatum. Animals were euthanized 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28 days post-infusion. Brains were processed for ELISA, HPLC, and immunohistochemistry (IHC). Both doses of the infused GDNF resulted in a sharp increase in striatal GDNF levels followed by a rapid decrease between day 3 and 7. Interestingly, IHC revealed GDNF in the septum and the base of the brain 14 days after GDNF administration. Dopamine (DA) turnover was significantly increased in a dose-dependent manner for more than 7 days after a single GDNF infusion. NTN persisted in the brain for at least two weeks longer than GDNF. It also had more persistent effects on DA turnover, probably due to its precipitation in the brain at neutral pH after infusion. Our data suggest that daily or continuous dosing may not be necessary for delivering growth factors into the CNS.
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