Effects of some monocyclic aromatic solvents and their metabolites on brain dopamine in rabbits

J Appl Toxicol. 1986 Dec;6(6):431-6. doi: 10.1002/jat.2550060609.


Adult male rabbits were exposed to high concentrations (750 ppm, 12 hours daily for 7 days) of toluene, xylenes, styrene, ethylbenzene, vinyltoluene (3-methylstyrene), and 7-methyl-styrene vapours or were dosed with 4 mM/kg/day i.p. of hippuric, methylhippuric, mandelic, phenylglyoxylic, and 7-methyl-mandelic acids. Styrene, vinyltoluene and ethylbenzene caused a marked depletion of striatal and tuberoinfundibular dopamine. Such an effect was also caused by treatment with phenylglyoxylic and mandelic acids. Dopamine depletion was associated with an increase in homovanillic acid concentration in the same regions. These results indicate that dopamine metabolism is a target for the neurotoxic effects of some monocyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and their metabolites, a lateral vinyl- or ethyl-chain being crucial for the structure/activity relationship of such compounds.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Chemistry / drug effects*
  • Dopamine / analysis*
  • Dopamine / metabolism
  • Homovanillic Acid / analysis
  • Hydrocarbons / toxicity*
  • Male
  • Rabbits
  • Solvents / toxicity*
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Styrene
  • Styrenes / toxicity
  • Toluene / toxicity


  • Hydrocarbons
  • Solvents
  • Styrenes
  • Toluene
  • Styrene
  • Dopamine
  • Homovanillic Acid