Schulz JB, Huang PL, Matthews RT, Passov D, Fishman MC, Beal MF. 1996. Striatal malonate lesions are attenuated in neuronal nitric oxide synthase knockout mice. Journal of neurochemistry. 67(1):430-3. Pubmed: 8667023


Intrastriatal administration of the reversible succinate dehydrogenase inhibitor malonate produces both energy depletion and striatal lesions by a secondary excitotoxic mechanism. To investigate the role of nitric oxide (NO.) in the pathogenesis of the lesions we examined malonate toxicity in mice in which the genes for neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) or endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) were disrupted. Malonate striatal lesions were significantly attenuated in the nNOS mutant mice, and they were significantly increased in the eNOS mutant mice. Malonate-induced increases in levels of 2,3- and 2,5-dihydroxybenzoic acid/salicylate, markers of hydroxyl radical generation, were significantly attenuated in the nNOS knockout mice. Malonate-induced increases in 3-nitrotyrosine, a marker for peroxynitrite-mediated damage, were blocked in the nNOS mice, whereas a significant increase occurred in the eNOS mice. These findings show that NO. produced by nNOS results in generation of peroxynitrite, which plays a role in malonate neurotoxicity.

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Mark C. Fishman’s group studies the heart-brain connection. They employ a range of genetic, developmental, and neurobiological tools in zebrafish to understand what the heart tells the brain, and how critical internal sensory systems adjust homeostatic and somatic behaviors, including social interactions.

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