2015 Volume 9 Issue 4 Pages 245-251
Tourette's syndrome (TS) is an inherited chronic neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by involuntary stereotyped motor and phonic behaviors called tics. Its pathogenesis is still unclear and its treatment remains limited. Our previous basic and clinical studies have shown that traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) preparation Ningdong granule (NDG) is effective for the treatment of TS with little side effects. In the current study, two TS rat models (Apomorphine (Apo)- and 3,3'-iminodipropionitrile (IDPN)-induced) were used to explore the dual regulating effects and mechanisms of NDG on extracellular DA concentration. We found that NDG could regulate the extracellular DA concentration dually: it could make a gradual recovery in extracellular DA content from both an up-regulated level in Apo-induced rats and down-regulated level in IDPN-induced rats measured by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The protein expression of DA transporter (DAT) was measured by Western blot and the result showed that NDG could elevate DAT expression when DA release was up-regulated and could decrease DAT expression when extracellular DA concentration was down-regulated. The main mechanism of the dual regulating effect of NDG on extracellular DA release might be related to DAT protein expression in TS, through which the released DA is re-uptaken into nerve terminals. Taken together, compared with conventional single-target anti-tics drugs such as haloperidol (Hal), NDG with the dual regulating effect would be more significant for TS treatment.