Effect of treadmill exercise on catalepsy and the expression of the BDNF gene in 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine male NMRI mice

Document Type: Original Article


1 Department of Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, North-Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Physiology, Qom Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qom, Iran


Objective(s): It is known that treadmill exercise has   beneficial effects on the nervous system. The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a role in such effects. This study aimed at investigating effects of intermittent treadmill exercise-induced behavioral, histology, and immunohistochemistry (H&E, TH) measurement of brain interleukin-10 (IL-10) in a mice male model of Parkinson’s disease (PD), which is induced by intraperitoneal injection of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), as well as the role of BDNF gene in exercise effects.
Materials and Methods: The animals were divided into Control (C), Saline (S), Parkinson (P), Exercise (E), and Parkinson + Exercise (PE) groups. Bar test was performed for the 21-day protocol with 5 days a week treadmill exercises. In this regard, brains were removed from the skull for H&E, TH, IL-10, and the expression of the BDNF gene using the MPTP male mice PD model.
Results: MPTP reduced the number of DA neurons in the substantia nigra (SNpc), whereas daily exercise administration on 1st, 7th, 14th, and 21st days significantly reduced the catalepsy duration induced by MPTP. The results of H&E and TH studies showed that MPTP significantly reduced the number of TH+ neurons in the SNpc compared with those of the control mice. The MPTP caused a marked decrease in basal protein levels of IL-10 in SNpc and corpus striatum in the Parkinson (P) group as compared with controls. Treatment with Exercise (E) group had the most BDNF expression (3.71), and the Parkinson (P) group also had the least BDNF expression (0.18) relative to controls.
Conclusion: The treadmill exercise having neuroprotective effects in SNpc and corpus striatum has improved MPTP associated with motor deficits. It is considered as a non-pharmacological tool for the management of PD.


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