Literature context: 0; Sigma-Aldrich catalog T1299, RRID:AB_477560) and mouse anti-GFP (1:500; The
Restorative therapy concepts, such as cell based therapies aim to restitute impaired neurotransmission in neurodegenerative diseases. New strategies to enhance grafted cell survival and integration are still needed to improve functional recovery. Anodal direct current stimulation (DCS) promotes neuronal activity and secretion of the trophic factor BDNF in the motor cortex. Transcranial DCS applied to the motor cortex transiently improves motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. In this proof-of-concept study, we combine cell based therapy and noninvasive neuromodulation to assess whether neurotrophic support via transcranial DCS would enhance the restitution of striatal neurotransmission by fetal dopaminergic transplants in a rat Parkinson model. Transcranial DCS was applied daily for 20 min on 14 consecutive days following striatal transplantation of fetal ventral mesencephalic (fVM) cells derived from transgenic rat embryos ubiquitously expressing GFP. Anodal but not cathodal transcranial DCS significantly enhanced graft survival and dopaminergic reinnervation of the surrounding striatal tissue relative to sham stimulation. Behavioral recovery was more pronounced following anodal transcranial DCS, and behavioral effects correlated with the degree of striatal innervation. Our results suggest anodal transcranial DCS may help advance cell-based restorative therapies in neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, such an assistive approach may be beneficial for the already established cell transplantation therapy in PD.
Literature context: (catalog #T1299, Sigma-Aldrich; RRID:AB_477560) using HRP-conjugated secondary
PARK2 is the most common gene mutated in monogenic recessive familial cases of Parkinson's disease (PD). Pathogenic mutations cause a loss of function of the encoded protein Parkin. ParkinKO mice, however, poorly represent human PD symptoms as they only exhibit mild motor phenotypes, minor dopamine metabolism abnormalities, and no signs of dopaminergic neurodegeneration. Parkin has been shown to participate in mitochondrial turnover, by targeting damaged mitochondria with low membrane potential to mitophagy. We studied the role of Parkin on mitochondrial quality control in vivo by knocking out Parkin in the PD-mito-PstI mouse (males), where the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) undergoes double-strand breaks only in dopaminergic neurons. The lack of Parkin promoted earlier onset of dopaminergic neurodegeneration and motor defects in the PD-mito-PstI mice, but it did not worsen the pathology. The lack of Parkin affected mitochondrial morphology in dopaminergic axons and was associated with an increase in mtDNA levels (mutant and wild type). Unexpectedly, it did not cause a parallel increase in mitochondrial mass or mitophagy. Our results suggest that Parkin affects mtDNA levels in a mitophagy-independent manner.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Parkinson's disease is characterized by progressive motor symptoms due to the selective loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. Loss-of-function mutations of Parkin cause some monogenic forms of Parkinson's disease, possibly through its role in mitochondrial turnover and quality control. To study whether Parkin has a role in vivo in the context of mitochondrial damage, we knocked out Parkin in a mouse model in which the mitochondrial DNA is damaged in dopaminergic neurons. We found that the loss of Parkin did not exacerbate the parkinsonian pathology already present in the mice, but it was associated with an increase in mtDNA levels (mutant and wild-type) without altering mitochondrial mass. These results shed new light on the function of Parkin in vivo.
Literature context: t# T1299, RRID:AB_477560, Sigma-Ald
Ethanol is a macronutrient whose intake is a form of ingestive behavior, sharing physiological mechanisms with food intake. Chronic ethanol consumption is detrimental to the brain, inducing gender-dependent neuronal damage. The hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARN) is a modulator of food intake that expresses feeding-regulatory neuropeptides, such as alpha melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and neuropeptide Y (NPY). Despite its involvement in pathways associated with eating disorders and ethanol abuse, the impact of ethanol consumption and withdrawal in the ARN structure and neurochemistry in females is unknown. We used female rat models of 20% ethanol consumption for six months and of subsequent ethanol withdrawal for two months. Food intake and body weights were measured. ARN morphology was stereologically analyzed to estimate its volume, total number of neurons and total number of neurons expressing NPY, α-MSH, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and estrogen receptor alpha (ERα). Ethanol decreased energy intake and body weights. However, it did not change the ARN morphology or the expression of NPY, α-MSH and TH, while increasing ERα expression. Withdrawal induced a significant volume and neuron loss that was accompanied by an increase in NPY expression without affecting α-MSH and TH expression. These findings indicate that the female ARN is more vulnerable to withdrawal than to excess alcohol. The data also support the hypothesis that the same pathways that regulate the expression of NPY and α-MSH in long-term ethanol intake may regulate food intake. The present model of long-term ethanol intake and withdrawal induces new physiological conditions with adaptive responses.
Literature context: xylase (TH-2) Sigma Cat #T1299; RRID:AB_477560 Rabbit polyclonal anti-glucosyl
α-Synuclein (α-syn) aggregation is a key event in Parkinson's disease (PD). Mutations in glycosphingolipid (GSL)-degrading glucocerebrosidase are risk factors for PD, indicating that disrupted GSL clearance plays a key role in α-syn aggregation. However, the mechanisms of GSL-induced aggregation are not completely understood. We document the presence of physiological α-syn conformers in human midbrain dopamine neurons and tested their contribution to the aggregation process. Pathological α-syn assembly mainly occurred through the conversion of high molecular weight (HMW) physiological α-syn conformers into compact, assembly-state intermediates by glucosylceramide (GluCer), without apparent disassembly into free monomers. This process was reversible in vitro through GluCer depletion. Reducing GSLs in PD patient neurons with and without GBA1 mutations diminished pathology and restored physiological α-syn conformers that associated with synapses. Our work indicates that GSLs control the toxic conversion of physiological α-syn conformers in a reversible manner that is amenable to therapeutic intervention by GSL reducing agents.
Literature context: :100; Sigma Aldrich, Cat# T1299 RRID:AB_477560; lot nÂ°: 015M4759V). Samples we
Catecholamine nuclei within the brainstem reticular formation (RF) play a pivotal role in a variety of brain functions. However, a systematic characterization of these nuclei in the very same experimental conditions is missing so far. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immune-positive cells of the brainstem correspond to dopamine (DA)-, norepinephrine (NE)-, and epinephrine (E)-containing cells. Here, we report a systematic count of TH-positive neurons in the RF of the mouse brainstem by using stereological morphometry. All these nuclei were analyzed for anatomical localization, rostro-caudal extension, volume, neuron number, neuron density, and mean neuronal area for each nucleus. The present data apart from inherent informative value wish to represent a reference for neuronal mapping in those studies investigating the functional anatomy of the brainstem RF. These include: the sleep-wake cycle, movement control, muscle tone modulation, mood control, novelty orienting stimuli, attention, archaic responses to internal and external stressful stimuli, anxiety, breathing, blood pressure, and innumerable activities modulated by the archaic iso-dendritic hard core of the brainstem RF. Most TH-immune-positive cells fill the lateral part of the RF, which indeed possesses a high catecholamine content. A few nuclei are medial, although conventional nosography considers all these nuclei as part of the lateral column of the RF. Despite the key role of these nuclei in psychiatric and neurological disorders, only a few of them aspired a great attention in biomedical investigation, while most of them remain largely obscure although intense research is currently in progress. A simultaneous description of all these nuclei is not simply key to comprehend the variety of brainstem catecholamine reticular neurons, but probably represents an intrinsically key base for understanding brain physiology and physiopathology.
Literature context: t# T1299; RRID:AB_477560 Chicken an
Microglia play critical roles in tissue homeostasis and can also modulate neuronal function and synaptic connectivity. In contrast to astrocytes and oligodendrocytes, which arise from multiple progenitor pools, microglia arise from yolk sac progenitors and are widely considered to be equivalent throughout the CNS. However, little is known about basic properties of deep brain microglia, such as those within the basal ganglia (BG). Here, we show that microglial anatomical features, lysosome content, membrane properties, and transcriptomes differ significantly across BG nuclei. Region-specific phenotypes of BG microglia emerged during the second postnatal week and were re-established following genetic or pharmacological microglial ablation and repopulation in the adult, indicating that local cues play an ongoing role in shaping microglial diversity. These findings demonstrate that microglia in the healthy brain exhibit a spectrum of distinct functional states and provide a critical foundation for defining microglial contributions to BG circuit function.
Literature context: RRID:AB_477560
Previous studies have demonstrated that a range of stimuli activate neurons, including catecholaminergic neurons, in the ventrolateral medulla. Not all catecholaminergic neurons are activated and other neurochemical content is largely unknown hence whether stimulus specific populations exist is unclear. Here we determine the neurochemistry (using in situ hybridization) of catecholaminergic and noncatecholaminergic neurons which express c-Fos immunoreactivity throughout the rostrocaudal extent of the ventrolateral medulla, in Sprague Dawley rats treated with hydralazine or saline. Distinct neuronal populations containing PPCART, PPPACAP, and PPNPY mRNAs, which were largely catecholaminergic, were activated by hydralazine but not saline. Both catecholaminergic and noncatecholaminergic neurons containing preprotachykinin and prepro-enkephalin (PPE) mRNAs were also activated, with the noncatecholaminergic population located in the rostral C1 region. Few GlyT2 neurons were activated. A subset of these data was then used to compare the neuronal populations activated by 2-deoxyglucose evoked glucoprivation (Brain Structure and Function (2015) 220:117). Hydralazine activated more neurons than 2-deoxyglucose but similar numbers of catecholaminergic neurons. Commonly activated populations expressing PPNPY and PPE mRNAs were defined. These likely include PPNPY expressing catecholaminergic neurons projecting to vasopressinergic and corticotrophin releasing factor neurons in the paraventricular nucleus, which when activated result in elevated plasma vasopressin and corticosterone. Stimulus specific neurons included noncatecholaminergic neurons and a few PPE positive catecholaminergic neuron but neurochemical codes were largely unidentified. Reasons for the lack of identification of stimulus specific neurons, readily detectable using electrophysiology in anaesthetized preparations and for which neural circuits can be defined, are discussed.
Literature context: 1299Â Mouse; monoclonalÂ 1:10,000Â AB_477560Â TH phosphorylated at Ser40Â Rabb
Kisspeptin (Kp) regulates prolactin (PRL) in an estradiol-dependent manner. We investigated the interaction between ovarian steroid receptors and Kp in the control of PRL secretion. Intracerebroventricular injections of Kp-10 or Kp-234 were performed in ovariectomized (OVX) rats under different hormonal treatments. Kp-10 increased PRL release and decreased 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid levels in the median eminence (ME) of OVX rats treated with estradiol (OVX+E), which was prevented by tamoxifen. Whereas these effects of Kp-10 were absent in OVX rats, they were replicated in OVX rats treated with selective agonist of estrogen receptor (ER)α, propylpyrazole triol, but not of ERβ, diarylpropionitrile. Furthermore, the Kp-10-induced increase in PRL was two times higher in OVX+E rats also treated with progesterone (OVX+EP), which was associated with a reduced expression of both tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and Ser40-phosphorylated TH in the ME. Kp-10 also reduced dopamine levels in the ME of OVX+EP rats, an effect blocked by the progesterone receptor (PR) antagonist RU486. We also determined the effect of Kp antagonism with Kp-234 on the estradiol-induced surges of PRL and luteinizing hormone (LH), using tail-tip blood sampling combined with ultrasensitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Kp-234 impaired the early phase of the PRL surge and prevented the LH surge in OVX+E rats. Thus, we provide evidence that Kp stimulation of PRL release requires ERα and is potentiated by progesterone via PR activation. Moreover, alongside its essential role in the LH surge, Kp seems to play a role in the peak phase of the estradiol-induced PRL surge.
Somatostatin (SST) or agonists of the SST-2 receptor (sst2 ) in the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) lower sympathetic nerve activity, arterial pressure, and heart rate, or when administered within the Bötzinger region, evoke apneusis. Our aims were to describe the mechanisms responsible for the sympathoinhibitory effects of SST on bulbospinal neurons and to identify likely sources of RVLM SST release. Patch clamp recordings were made from bulbospinal RVLM neurons (n = 31) in brainstem slices prepared from juvenile rat pups. Overall, 58% of neurons responded to SST, displaying an increase in conductance that reversed at -93 mV, indicative of an inwardly rectifying potassium channel (GIRK) mechanism. Blockade of sst2 abolished this effect, but application of tetrodotoxin did not, indicating that the SST effect is independent of presynaptic activity. Fourteen bulbospinal RVLM neurons were recovered for immunohistochemistry; nine were SST-insensitive and did not express sst2a . Three out of five responsive neurons were sst2a -immunoreactive. Neurons that contained preprosomatostatin mRNA and cholera-toxin-B retrogradely transported from the RVLM were detected in: paratrigeminal nucleus, lateral parabrachial nucleus, Kölliker-Fuse nucleus, ventrolateral periaqueductal gray area, central nucleus of the amygdala, sublenticular extended amygdala, interstitial nucleus of the posterior limb of the anterior commissure nucleus, and bed nucleus of the stria terminalis. Thus, those brain regions are putative sources of endogenous SST release that, when activated, may evoke sympathoinhibitory effects via interactions with subsets of sympathetic premotor neurons that express sst2 .
Literature context: 99 mouse monoclonal (clone TH-2)AB_4775601:500Tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH
The habenula is a phylogenetically conserved brain structure in the epithalamus. It is a major node in the information flow between fronto-limbic brain regions and monoaminergic brainstem nuclei, and is thus anatomically and functionally ideally positioned to regulate emotional, motivational, and cognitive behaviors. Consequently, the habenula may be critically important in the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders such as addiction and depression. Here we investigated the expression pattern of GPR151, a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), whose mRNA has been identified as highly and specifically enriched in habenular neurons by in situ hybridization and translating ribosome affinity purification (TRAP). In the present immunohistochemical study we demonstrate a pronounced and highly specific expression of the GPR151 protein in the medial and lateral habenula of rodent brain. Specific expression was also seen in efferent habenular fibers projecting to the interpeduncular nucleus, the rostromedial tegmental area, the rhabdoid nucleus, the mesencephalic raphe nuclei, and the dorsal tegmental nucleus. Using confocal microscopy and quantitative colocalization analysis, we found that GPR151-expressing axons and terminals overlap with cholinergic, substance P-ergic, and glutamatergic markers. Virtually identical expression patterns were observed in rat, mouse, and zebrafish brains. Our data demonstrate that GPR151 is highly conserved, specific for a subdivision of the habenular neurocircuitry, and constitutes a promising novel target for psychiatric drug development.
Literature context: o. T1299, RRID:AB_477560) (Table 1)
Many respiration-related interneurons and motoneurons receive a catecholaminergic input, but the extent and distribution of this input to recurrent laryngeal motoneurons that innervate intrinsic muscles of the larynx are not clear. In the present study, we examined the catecholaminergic input to expiratory laryngeal motoneurons in the caudal nucleus ambiguus by combining intracellular labeling of single identified motoneurons, with immunohistochemistry to reveal tyrosine hydroxylase immunoreactive (catecholaminergic) terminal varicosities. Close appositions were found between the two structures, with 18 ± 5 close appositions per motoneuron (n = 7). Close appositions were more frequently observed on distal rather than proximal dendrites. Axosomatic appositions were not seen. In order to determine the source of this input, microinjections of cholera toxin B subunit (1%, 20 nl) were made into the caudal nucleus ambiguus. Retrogradely labeled neurons, located in the ipsilateral nucleus tractus solitarius and the area postrema, were tyrosine hydroxylase-positive. Our results not only demonstrate details of the extent and distribution of potential catecholamine inputs to the expiratory laryngeal motoneuron, but further indicate that the inputs, at least in part, originate from the dorsomedial medulla, providing a potential anatomical basis for previously reported catecholaminergic effects on the laryngeal adductor reflex.
Lesions of the rat nigrostriatal dopamine system by injection of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lead to abnormal neuronal activity in the basal ganglia (BG) motor loop similar to that found in Parkinson's disease (PD). In the BG motor loop the subthalamic nucleus (STN) represents an important structure, which, however, also comprises areas of the BG associative and limbic loops. We were interested whether neuronal activity would differ between the STN medial associative-limbic and lateral motor part, and whether selective 6-OHDA-induced lesions of the dorsolateral striatum, the entrance region of the BG motor loop, would differently affect these subregions. In male Sprague-Dawley rats 6-OHDA (n = 12) or vehicle (n = 10) was bilaterally injected in the dorsolateral striatum. Four weeks later extracellular single-unit activity and local field potentials were recorded in medial and lateral STN neurons of urethane-anesthetized rats. In sham-lesioned rats the discharge rate and burst activity were higher in the lateral compared to the medial STN. Similar differences were found for other neuronal activity measures (coefficient of variation of interspike interval, skewness, kurtosis, approximate entropy). After 6-OHDA injection neuronal burst activity was enhanced, while the discharge rate was not affected. In addition, in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats β-band oscillatory activity was enhanced, with no difference between STN subregions. We found important differences of neuronal activity between STN subregions, indicating functional segregation. However, selective 6-OHDA lesions of the dorsolateral striatum also had a pronounced effect on the medial STN subregion, indicating interaction between BG loops.
The nucleus accumbens (NAc) plays a central role in motivation and reward. While there is ample evidence for sex differences in addiction-related behaviors, little is known about the neuroanatomical substrates that underlie these sexual dimorphisms. We investigated sex differences in synaptic connectivity of the NAc by evaluating pre- and postsynaptic measures in gonadally intact male and proestrous female rats. We used DiI labeling and confocal microscopy to measure dendritic spine density, spine head size, dendritic length, and branching of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the NAc, and quantitative immunofluorescence to measure glutamatergic innervation using pre- (vesicular glutamate transporter 1 and 2) and postsynaptic (postsynaptic density 95) markers, as well as dopaminergic innervation of the NAc. We also utilized electron microscopy to complement the above measures. Clear but subtle sex differences were identified, namely, in distal dendritic spine density and the proportion of large spines on MSNs, both of which are greater in females. Sex differences in spine density and spine head size are evident in both the core and shell subregions, but are stronger in the core. This study is the first demonstration of neuroanatomical sex differences in the NAc and provides evidence that structural differences in synaptic connectivity and glutamatergic input may contribute to behavioral sex differences in reward and addiction.
Coexpression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) mRNAs in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and colocalization of these proteins in axon terminals of the nucleus accumbens (nAcb) have recently been demonstrated in immature (15-day-old) rat. After neonatal 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion, the proportion of VTA neurons expressing both mRNAs and of nAcb terminals displaying the two proteins was enhanced. To determine the fate of this dual phenotype in adults, double in situ hybridization and dual immunolabeling for TH and VGLUT2 were performed in 90-day-old rats subjected or not to the neonatal 6-OHDA lesion. Very few neurons expressed both mRNAs in the VTA and substantia nigra (SN) of P90 rats, even after neonatal 6-OHDA. Dually immunolabeled terminals were no longer found in the nAcb of normal P90 rats and were exceedingly rare in the nAcb of 6-OHDA-lesioned rats, although they had represented 28% and 37% of all TH terminals at P15. Similarly, 17% of all TH terminals in normal neostriatum and 46% in the dopamine neoinnervation of SN in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats were also immunoreactive for VGLUT2 at P15, but none at P90. In these three regions, all dually labeled terminals made synapse, in contradistinction to those immunolabeled for only TH or VGLUT2 at P15. These results suggest a regression of the VGLUT2 phenotype of dopamine neurons with age, following normal development, lesion, or sprouting after injury, and a role for glutamate in the establishment of synapses by these neurons.
Sympathetic ganglia are primarily composed of noradrenergic neurons and satellite glial cells. Although both cell types originate from neural crest cells, the identities of the progenitor populations at intermediate stages of the differentiation process remain to be established. Here we report on the identification in vivo of glial and neuronal progenitor cells in postnatal sympathetic ganglia, by using mouse superior cervical ganglia as a model system. There are significant levels of cellular proliferation in mouse superior cervical ganglia during the first 18 days after birth. A majority of the proliferating cells express both nestin and brain lipid-binding protein (BLBP). Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) fate-tracing experiments demonstrate that these nestin and BLBP double-positive cells represent a population of glial progenitors for sympathetic satellite cells. The glial differentiation process is characterized by a marked downregulation of nestin and upregulation of S100, with no significant changes in the levels of BLBP expression. We also identify a small number of proliferating cells that express nestin and tyrosine hydroxylase, a key enzyme of catecholamine biosynthesis that defines sympathetic noradrenergic neurons. Together, these results establish nestin as a common marker for sympathetic neuronal and glial progenitor cells and delineate the cellular basis for the generation and maturation of sympathetic satellite cells.
Sall3 is a zinc finger containing putative transcription factor and a member of the Sall gene family. Members of the Sall gene family are highly expressed during development. Sall3-deficient mice die in the perinatal period because of dehydration and display alterations in palate formation and cranial nerve formation (Parrish et al.  Mol Cell Biol 24:7102-7112). We examined the role of Sall3 in the development of the olfactory system. We determined that Sall3 is expressed by cells in the olfactory epithelium and olfactory bulb. Sall3 deficiency specifically alters formation of the glomerular layer. The glomerular layer was hypocellular, because of a decrease in the number of interneurons. The lateral ganglionic eminence and rostral migratory stream developed normally in Sall3-deficient animals, which suggests that Sall3 is not required for the initial specification of olfactory bulb interneurons. Fewer GAD65/67-, Pax6-, calretinin-, and calbindin-positive cells were detected in the glomerular layer, accompanied by an increase in cells positive for these markers in the granule cell layer. In addition, a complete absence of tyrosine hydroxylase expression was observed in the olfactory bulb in the absence of Sall3. However, expression of Nurr1, a marker of dopaminergic precursors, was maintained, indicating that dopaminergic precursors were present. Our data suggest that Sall3 is required for the terminal maturation of neurons destined for the glomerular layer.
Vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUT1, -2, and -3) mediate the accumulation of transmitter glutamate into synaptic vesicles in glutamatergic neurons. VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 are more reliable glutamatergic neuron markers, since VGLUT3 also exists in other neuron types. To study whether the dopaminergic neuron uses glutamate as a cotransmitter, we analyzed VGLUTs expression in dopamine neurons of adult male rats by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. In the ventral midbrain, in situ hybridization analysis revealed no VGLUT1 mRNA expression, a widespread but discrete pattern of VGLUT2 mRNA expression, and a highly limited expression of VGLUT3 mRNA. Reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis detected full-length VGLUT2 gene transcripts in the ventral midbrain. Using in situ hybridization combined with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunostaining, only VGLUT2 signals were detectable in some TH-labeled neurons of A10 dopamine neuron groups, with the highest incidence (20%) in the rostral linear nucleus of the ventral tegmental area. In the forebrain, VGLUT2 signals were demonstrated in half of the A11 TH-labeled neurons in the hypothalamus. Double-label immunostaining for VGLUT2 and vesicular monoamine transporter 2 or TH showed that double-labeled varicosities are rarely observed in any target regions examined of A10 and A11 dopamine neuron groups. These results indicate that VGLUT2 is expressed in subsets of A10 and A11 dopamine neurons, which might release dopamine and glutamate separately from different varicosities in the majority of their single axons.
To address the hypothesis that reactive astrocytes in the basal ganglia of an animal model of Parkinson's disease serve neurotrophic roles, we studied the expression pattern of neurotrophic factors in the basal ganglia of C57/Bl mice that had been treated with 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) to induce the degeneration of nigral dopamine neurons and parkinsonism. MPTP induced significant neuronal degeneration in the substantia nigra pars compacta as detected with Fluoro-Jade B staining, and this was accompanied by an increase in nestin-expressing astrocytes within the caudate-putamen. The number of nestin-positive reactive astrocytes in the caudate-putamen peaked within 3-5 days following MPTP treatment and then declined progressively toward the basal level by 21 days after treatment. Immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy confirmed coexpression of nestin or Ki-67 (cell proliferation marker) in glial fibrillary acid protein-positive astrocytes in the caudate-putamen. Double immunolabeling further revealed immunoreactivities for nerve growth factor (NGF), neurotrophin-3 (NT3), and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) in nestin-positive reactive astrocytes. Semiquantification of data obtained from mice 5 days after MPTP injection indicated that the majority of nestin-expressing cells expressed NGF (92%), NT3 (90%), or GDNF (86%). Our results present novel evidence of neurotrophic features among reactive astrocytes in the dopamine-depleted striatum. These nestin-expressing reactive astrocytes may therefore play neurotrophic roles in neural remodeling of the basal ganglia in Parkinson's disease.