Oxidative stress and excitotoxicity in Parkinson's disease: role of glutamate transporters as possible targets for the curative properties of theanine, a component of green tea

Project Details


Within this project we investigate the involvement of the glutamate transporters, i.e. the high-affinity Nai+/K+ -dependent glutamate transporters, the vesicular glutamate transporters and the cystine/glutamate antiporter or system xc- in the observed excitotoxicity and oxidative stress in Parkinson's disease. We therefore investigated the expression levels and activity of these transporters in striatum of hemi-Parkinson rats with a unilateral 6-0HDA lesion of the medial forebrain bundle (MFB). In addition we are studying the sensitivity of glutamate transporter deficient mice to 6-0HDA by quantifying neurodegeneration and oxidative stress as a function of time after inducing striatal lesions. This will elucidate whether the observed changes in transporter expression/activity are the reason for or the result of neurodegeneration and/or oxidative stress. If our results suggest a causal relationship, the particular transporter will be an interesting target for the development of new pharmacotherapies that could prevent the progressive neurodegeneration. Moreover, we will investigate whether theanine, a component of green tea and a glutamate analogue, is neuroprotective in our rat model for Parkinson's disease. If this is indeed the case, we will try to find out whether this neuroprotective action is linked to the glutamate transporters.
Effective start/end date1/10/1030/09/13


  • Aminoacids
  • Parkinsons Disease
  • Neuro-Transmitters
  • Neuropharmacology
  • clinical pharmacy
  • Stroke
  • Receptors
  • Rat Models
  • Neurochemistry
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Microdialysis
  • neuroscience
  • Drug Research
  • Bioanalysis
  • Epilepsy
  • seamless care
  • Monoamines
  • Neurosciences
  • Liquid Chromatography
  • pharmaceutical care
  • Electrochemical Detection

Flemish discipline codes

  • (Bio)chemical engineering
  • Basic sciences
  • Health sciences
  • Pharmaceutical sciences