High-frequency stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus reverses limb-use asymmetry in rats with unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine lesions.


Journal Article

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a widely used clinical treatment for Parkinson's disease (PD). A rodent model of DBS is a necessary tool for understanding the neural mechanisms of this method. Our previous study showed that high-frequency stimulation (HFS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) improved treadmill locomotion in rats with unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced lesions of nigrostriatal dopamine (DA) neurons. The present study tested DBS effects on limb-use asymmetry (LUA) during vertical/lateral exploration in a cylindrical chamber in rats with similar unilateral nigrostriatal DA lesions. Limb-use asymmetry assessment has been used to detect functional capacity over a wide range of dopamine depletion. Before lesioning, rats exhibited regular rearing activity and used both forelimbs equally often to support weight during exploration of the walls of the cylinder. After unilateral nigrostriatal DA lesioning, rats displayed reduced rearing activity and predominant use of the ipsilateral (good) forelimb to touch the wall. HFS of the STN, but not of other nearby regions surrounding the STN, in the lesioned rats restored normal rearing activity and reversed the limb-use asymmetry caused by the unilateral DA depletion. This study is consistent with the possibility that there can be beneficial effects of STN-DBS on behavioral impairments in unilateral DA-depleted rats and may suggest an appropriate rodent model for DBS study.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Shi, L-H; Woodward, DJ; Luo, F; Anstrom, K; Schallert, T; Chang, J-Y

Published Date

  • July 2, 2004

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 1013 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 98 - 106

PubMed ID

  • 15196972

Pubmed Central ID

  • 15196972

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0006-8993

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.brainres.2004.03.053


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Netherlands