Monoaminergic dysregulation in glutathione-deficient mice: possible relevance to schizophrenia?
Several lines of research have implicated glutathione (GSH) in schizophrenia. For instance, GSH deficiency has been reported in the prefrontal cortex of schizophrenics in vivo. Further, in rats postnatal GSH-deficiency combined with hyperdopaminergia led to cognitive impairments in the adult. In the present report we studied the effects of 2-day GSH-deficiency with L-buthionine-(S,R)-sulfoximine on monoaminergic function in mice. The effect of GSH-deficiency per se and when combined with the amphetamine and phencyclidine (PCP) models of schizophrenia was investigated. GSH-deficiency significantly altered tissue levels of dopamine (DA), 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) and their respective metabolites homovanillic acid (HVA), and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) in a region-specific fashion. The effects of GSH-deficiency on tissue monoamines were distinct from and, generally, did not interact with the effects of amphetamine (5 mg/kg; i.p.) on tissue monoamines. Microdialysis studies showed that extracellular DA-release after amphetamine (5 mg/kg, i.p.) was two-fold increased in the nucleus accumbens of GSH-deficient mice as compared with control mice. Basal DA was unaltered. Further, extracellular levels of HVA in the frontal cortex and hippocampus and 5-HIAA in the nucleus accumbens were elevated by GSH-deficiency per se. Spontaneous locomotor activity in the open field was unchanged in GSH-deficient mice. In contrast, GSH-deficiency modulated the locomotor responses to mid-range doses of amphetamine (1.5 and 5 mg/kg, i.p.). Further, GSH-deficient mice displayed an increased locomotor response to low (2 and 3 mg/kg, i.p.) doses of phencyclidine (PCP). In conclusion, the data presented here show that even short-term GSH-deficiency has consequences for DA and 5-HT function. This was confirmed on both neurochemical and behavioral levels. How GSH and the monoamines interact needs further scrutiny. Moreover, the open field findings suggest reduced or altered N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor function in GSH-deficient mice. Thus, GSH-deficiency can lead to disturbances in DA, 5-HT and NMDA function, a finding that may have relevance for schizophrenia.
Jacobsen, JPR; Rodriguiz, RM; Mørk, A; Wetsel, WC
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