The Roborovskii hamster (Phodopus roborovskii) has been shown to have high locomotor activity (hyperactivity) and low dopamine concentrations in the brain. We hypothesized that low brain dopamine concentrations play a role in the pathogenesis of hyperactivity. In this study, therefore, we investigated the effects of L-DOPA (L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine), the precursor of dopamine, on the locomotor activity of Roborovskii hamster to verify the above hypothesis. An open field test was employed to measure the locomotor activity. Administration of L-DOPA dose-dependently decreased locomotor activity including distance of path and time spent moving. L-DOPA increased the brain concentration of dopamine and its metabolite 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid. Concurrently, L-DOPA caused increase of norepinephrine, decrease of serotonin, and atypical alteration of their metabolite concentrations. These findings mainly suggest that in Roborovskii hamsters, a low level of brain dopamine neurotransmission is one of the reasons for hyperactivity, and hyperactivity can be attenuated by L-DOPA.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health