Huntington’s disease (HD) is a chronic progressive autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by striatal-specific degeneration. In spite of extensive research this devastating hereditary disease remains incurable, warranting further studies to determine the cause and cure of HD. It has been reported that nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAchR) in the central nervous system (CNS) is a new potential therapeutic target for the management of neurodegenerative diseases.
Figure. Tyrosine hydroxylase immunostaining of the striatal dopaminergic neurons. (A) Normal (B) 3-NP treated rats.
We have demonstrated the protective effects of nAchR agonist, nicotine, against 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP) induced biochemical, behavioral and histological changes in a rat model of Huntington’s disease . Our findings further new insights of the mechanisms of HD that might help to design novel therapies for this disabling neurodegenerative disease.
Mohamed T, Khan HA, Elfaki I, Al Deeb S, Al Moutaery K. Neuroprotective effect of nicotine against 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP)-induced experimental Huntington’s disease in rats. Brain Res Bull 2005; 67: 161-168.