Acute Effects of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) or paraquat on core temperature in C57BL/6J mice

Yun Jiao, Yuchen Dou, Georgina Lockwood, Amar Pani, Richard Jay Smeyne

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MPTP and paraquat are two compounds that have been used to model Parkinson's disease in mice. Previous studies in two non-traditional strains of mice have shown that a single dose of MPTP can induce changes in body temperature, while the effects of paraquat have not been examined. Examination of body temperature is important since small fluctuations in an animal's core temperature can significantly affect drug metabolism, and if significant enough can even culminate in an animal's death. Objective: To determine how external heating can alter the survival of C57BL/6J mice following MPTP administration. Methods: In this study, we examine the effects of MPTP (4×20 mg/kg, 2 hours apart) and paraquat (2×10 mg/kg/week for 3 weeks) on core temperature of C57BL/6J mice. Correlations of purine and catecholamine levels were also done in mice treated with MPTP. Results:We find that MPTP induces a significant hypothermia in C57BL/6J mice that reduces their core temperature below the limit of fatal hypothermia. Unlike MPTP, paraquat did not induce a significant hypothermia. Placement of animals on heating pads significantly abrogates the loss of core temperature. In both heated and non-heated conditions, mice treated with MPTP showed a significant depletion of ATP within 2 hours of administration in both striatum and SN that started to recover 2 hours after MPTP administration was complete. Striatal DA and DOPAC are significantly reduced starting 4-6 hours after MPTP. Conclusions: The fatal hypothermic effects of MPTP can be abrogated through use of external heating.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-401
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Parkinson's Disease
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015


  • fatal hypothermic temperature
  • Mouse strain
  • MPTP
  • paraquat
  • temperature


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