L-DOPA attenuates hyperactivity of Roborovskii hamsters

Yusuke Kabuki, Kazutaka Shigemi, Kousuke Hamasu, Mitsuhiro Furuse

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8 Citations (Scopus)


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.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)260-264
Number of pages5
JournalBehavioural Pharmacology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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