This study aimed to investigate behavioral and neurochemical effects of α -lipoic acid (100 mg/kg or 200 mg/kg) alone or associated with L-DOPA using an animal model of Parkinson's disease induced by stereotaxic injection of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) in rat striatum. Motor behavior was assessed by monitoring body rotations induced by apomorphine, open field test and cylinder test. Oxidative stress was accessed by determination of lipid peroxidation using the TBARS method, concentration of nitrite and evaluation of catalase activity. α -Lipoic acid decreased body rotations induced by apomorphine, as well as caused an improvement in motor performance by increasing locomotor activity in the open field test and use of contralateral paw (in the opposite side of the lesion produced by 6-OHDA) at cylinder test. α -lipoic acid showed antioxidant effects, decreasing lipid peroxidation and nitrite levels and interacting with antioxidant system by decreasing of endogenous catalase activity. Therefore, α -lipoic acid prevented the damage induced by 6-OHDA or by chronic use of L-DOPA in dopaminergic neurons, suggesting that α -lipoic could be a new therapeutic target for Parkinson's disease prevention and treatment.