Indexed on: 02 Jun '05Published on: 02 Jun '05Published in: The international journal of neuropsychopharmacology / official scientific journal of the Collegium Internationale Neuropsychopharmacologicum (CINP)
Our previous studies revealed that activation of mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium channels exerted protective effects on rotenone-treated rats and cultured cells. The aim of the present study is to examine the potential therapeutic effects of iptakalim, an ATP-sensitive potassium-channel opener, and diazoxide, a selective mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium-channel opener, on Parkinsonian symptoms in rats induced by rotenone. Rats were treated with rotenone (2.5 mg/kg s.c.) daily for 4 wk. This treatment caused a depletion of dopamine in the striatum and substantia nigra. Behaviourally, rotenone-infused rats exhibit Parkinsonian symptoms. Catalepsy was estimated by a 9-cm bar test. Treatment with L-dopa (10 mg/kg.d p.o.), iptakalim (0.75, 1.5, 3.0 mg/kg.d p.o.) and diazoxide (3.0 mg/kg.d p.o.) for 2 wk improved behavioural dysfunction and elevated dopamine contents in the striatum and substantia nigra of rotenone-treated rats. Studies also found that iptakalim and diazoxide could reduce the enzymic activities and mRNA levels of inducible nitric oxide synthase elicited by chronic administration of rotenone. All neurorestorative effects by both iptakalim and diazoxide were abolished by 5-hydroxydecanoate, a selective mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium-channel blocker. Collectively, the data suggested that mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium channels play a key role in improving both Parkinsonian symptoms and neurochemistry alterations of rotenone model rats, and selective activation of mitochondrial ATP-sensitive potassium channels may provide a new therapeutic strategy for treatment of early Parkinson's disease.