Recovery from experimental parkinsonism in primates with GM1 ganglioside treatment

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  08 May 1992:
Vol. 256, Issue 5058, pp. 843-846
DOI: 10.1126/science.256.5058.843


A parkinsonian syndrome can be produced in nonhuman primates by administration of the neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). Parkinsonian-like symptoms induced acutely by MPTP were ameliorated after treatment with GM1 ganglioside, a substance shown to have neurotrophic effects on the damaged dopamine system in rodents. Treatment with GM1 ganglioside also increased striatal dopamine and metabolite levels and enhanced the dopaminergic innervation of the striatum as demonstrated by tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry. These results suggest that GM1 ganglioside may hold promise as a therapeutic agent for the treatment of Parkinson's disease.