|Northrop Services, Inc., Research Triangle Park, NC. ;Duke Univ. Medical Center, Durham, NC. Dept. of Pharmacology.;Health Effects Research Lab., Research Triangle Park, NC.
Norepinephrine has been hypothesized as a trophic factor influencing postnatal development of the cerebellum. In the current study, neonatal rats were given 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) to destroy noradrenergic projections and the effects on the ornithine decarboxylase (ODC)/polyamine system were evaluated; ODC initiates the synthesis of polyamines, which are known to control cellular development in the cerebellum, and neonatal ODC activity is regulated in part by B2-adrenergic receptors. Intracisternal administration of 6-OHDA resulted in complete and permanent depletion of cerebellar norepinephrine and a deficit in ODC, polyamine levels and cerebellar growth. Subcutaneous administration of 6-OHDA, which caused only a small initial reduction in cerebellar norepinephrine, did not affect ODC and had only minor effects on tissue growth. Indeed, levels of the polyamines tended to be elevated after subcutaneous 6-OHDA, associated with postweaning elevations in norepinephrine, results which are probably indicative of axonal regeneration. (Copyright (c) 1990 Elsevier Publishers BV (Biomedical Division).)