Dopamine

 

This is the immediate precursor of noradrenalin found in some areas where there is low noradrenalin concentration in the brain. These areas contain low dopamine B-hydroxylase enzyme which causes the conversion of dopamine to noradrenalin. Dopaminergic neurons are found mainly in the midbrain projecting from the substantia nigra to the stritum via the nigrostriatal system. They also project to other parts of the mesolimbic system, olfactory tubercle and the nucleus accumbens. Some following facts demonstrate the involvement of Dopamine in behavioural mechanisms.

a)                                                      Depletion of dopamine in the basal ganglia causes parkinsonian disease. Treatment of this condition is by administration of L-Dopa.

b)                                                      Drugs that produce parkinsonian symptoms usually deplete the basal ganglia of dopamine e.g. the phenothiazines.

c)                                                      The dopamine theory schizophrenia suggests that the etiopathogenesis of the schizophreniform psychoses is related.

d)                                                     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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