Dopamine receptors in the subthalamic nucleus are involved in the regulation of muscle tone in the rat

Kim M. Hemsley, Eleanor J. Farrall, Ann D. Crocker

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8 Citations (Scopus)


The effects of injecting an irreversible dopamine receptor antagonist, N-ethoxycarbonyl-2-ethoxy-1,2-dihydroquinoline (EEDQ) bilaterally into the subthalamic nucleus (STN) on changes in muscle tone and behaviour were investigated. Increased muscle tone (i.e. rigidity) was assessed quantitatively as increases in tonic electromyographic (EMG) activity in the hindlimb muscles of conscious, unrestrained rats. Significant, sustained increases in EMG activity were observed for 3-5 h post-injection in the tibialis and gastrocnemius muscles following injection of EEDQ into the STN. This effect was associated with 73% dopamine D1 and 66% dopamine D2 receptor occupancy in the STN, while dopamine receptors in surrounding regions were minimally occupied. These results provide new evidence that dopamine receptors located in the STN play an important role in the regulation of normal muscle tone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-126
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 14 Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Basal ganglia
  • Dopamine receptors
  • Muscle tone
  • N-ethoxycarbonyl-2-ethoxy-1,2-dihydroquinoline
  • Rat
  • Subthalamic nucleus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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