Microglial reaction in MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine) induced Parkinson's disease mice model

Neurodegeneration. 1996 Jun;5(2):137-43. doi: 10.1006/neur.1996.0020.


We studied the microglial reaction in mice using the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced model for Parkinson's disease (PD). Microglial cells were identified by means of the Griffonia simplicifolia lectin (GSA-I-B4). Dopaminergic neurons were marked by tyrosine hydroxylase antibodies. Microglial activation was demonstrated by an increase in cellular number and changes of morphology (increased lectin staining, larger cell bodies and thicker processes) were seen in the substantia nigra from the 1st to the 14th day and in the striatum from the 1st to the 4th day after intoxication. Depletion of dopaminergic neurons was most pronounced 7 and 14 days following the treatment. The results suggest that microglial activation may be involved in the sequence of pathological changes that lead to dopaminergic neuronal damage after MPTP intoxication.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Dopamine / metabolism
  • Lectins
  • MPTP Poisoning*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Microglia / drug effects
  • Microglia / pathology*
  • Neurons / drug effects
  • Neurons / pathology*
  • Parkinson Disease, Secondary / chemically induced
  • Parkinson Disease, Secondary / pathology*
  • Substantia Nigra / drug effects
  • Substantia Nigra / pathology*
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase / analysis


  • Biomarkers
  • Lectins
  • Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase
  • Dopamine