The neuronal nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, 7-nitroindazole, protects against methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity in vivo

Yossef Itzhak, Syed F. Ali

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The present study was undertaken to investigate whether the relatively selective neuronal nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor, 7-nitroindazole (7- NI), protects against methamphetamine (METH)-induced neurotoxicity. Male Swiss Webster mice received the following treatments (i.p.; q 3 h x 3): (a) vehicle/saline, (b) 7-NI (25 mg/kg)/saline, (c) vehicle/METH (5 mg/kg), and (d) 7-NI (25 mg/kg)/METH (5 mg/kg). On the second day, groups (a) and (b) received two vehicle injections, and groups (c) and (d) received two 7-NI injections (25 mg/kg, each). Administration of vehicle/METH resulted in 68, 44, and 55% decreases in the concentration of dopamine, 3,4- dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, and homovanillic acid, respectively, and a 48% decrease in the number of [3H]mazindol binding sites in the striatum compared with control values. Treatment with 7-NI (group d) provided full protection against the depletion of dopamine and its metabolites and the loss of dopamine transporter binding sites. Administration of 7-NI/saline (group b) affected neither the tissue concentration of dopamine and its metabolites nor the binding parameters of [3H]mazindol compared with control values. 7- NI had no significant effect on animals' body temperature, and it did not affect METH-induced hyperthermia. These findings indicate a role for nitric oxide in methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity and also suggest that blockade of NOS may be beneficial for the management of Parkinson's disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1770-1773
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of neurochemistry
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 1996



  • 7- Nitroindazole
  • Dopamine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Nitric oxide synthase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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