Syntaxin is a synapse-specific protein previously localized to the plasma membrane of axon terminals. Biochemical and molecular biological studies indicate a prominent role for syntaxin 1A and 1B in synaptic vesicle docking and/or fusion, suggesting that these proteins are localized to active zone regions of most terminal varicosities in the central nervous system. We sought to test this hypothesis by examining the cellular and subcellular immunocytochemical localization of syntaxin 1 proteins in the striatum and frontal cortex of rats. ⋯ These findings suggest that syntaxin is primarily contained in a subpopulation of terminals that are associated with excitatory amino acid transmitters, but appears not to be ubiquitously expressed in all terminal classes. The results further indicate that syntaxin is localized to non-synaptic regions of axon and terminal membranes, but may not be enriched in presynaptic active zones. The apparent inconsistency between the subcellular localization of syntaxin and its proposed role in vesicle exocytosis is discussed in terms of possible technical limitations and alternative functions for syntaxin.
This study evaluated the effect of surgical sympathectomy on pain-related behaviours in a well established model of peripheral mononeuropathy produced by loose ligatures around the common sciatic nerve in the rat. Behavioural abnormalities include spontaneous abnormal position of the hindpaw after the nerve constriction, indicative of "spontaneous pain", and changes in responses to mechanical or thermal stimuli applied to this paw. These changes are usually maximal at week 2 after the surgery, stable until weeks 3-4, and disappear between weeks 8 and 12. ⋯ In contrast, the abnormal reaction to mechanical pressure was not influenced, and the behavioural abnormalities indicating spontaneous pain were still present. Sympathectomy alone resulted in a reduction of the vocalization threshold to pressure on both hindpaws, but also a short-lasting increased tolerance to cold immersion. This study confirms the selective role of the sympathetic nervous system in affecting the development and maintenance of some abnormal pain-related behaviours to thermal stimuli in rats with a moderate, but persistent, constriction of one sciatic nerve.
Animal models with partial lesions of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal pathway may be useful for developing neuroprotective and neurotrophic therapies for Parkinson's disease. To develop such a model, different doses of 6-hydroxydopamine (0.0, 0.625, 1.25, 2.5 and 5.0 micrograms/microliters in 3.5 microliters of saline) were unilaterally injected into the striatum of rats. Animals that received 1.25 to 5.0 micrograms/microliters 6-hydroxydopamine displayed dose-dependent amphetamine and apomorphine-induced circling. 6-Hydroxydopamine also caused dose-dependent reductions in [3H]mazindol-labeled dopamine uptake sites in the lesioned striatum and ipsilateral substantia nigra pars compacta (up to 93% versus contralateral binding), with smaller losses in the nucleus accumbens, olfactory tubercle and ventral tegmental area. ⋯ This study indicates that intrastriatal injection of different doses of 6-hydroxydopamine can be used to cause increasing amounts of dopamine denervation, which could model Parkinson's disease of varying degrees of severity. Injecting 3.5 microliters of 2.5 micrograms/microliters 6-hydroxydopamine appears to be particularly useful as a general model of early Parkinson's disease, since it induces a lesion characterized by robust drug-induced rotation, changes in binding consistent with approximately 70% dopamine denervation, approximately 19% dopamine D22 receptor up-regulation, negligible intrinsic striatal damage and stability for at least 12 weeks. This study outlines a technique for inducing partial lesions of the nigrostriatal dopamine pathway in rats.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)