Quinones and Other Reactive Oxygen Species in Neurobiologic, Apoptotic, and Neurotoxic Processes

Model Neuromelanins as antioxidative agents during lipid peroxidation

Richard M. Kostrzewa

Although neuromelanins appear to have a seemingly important role in chain terminating reactions, neuromelanin-/dopamine-containing neurons of the substantia nigra (and neuromelanin-/norepinephrine-containing neurons of the locus coeruleus) degenerate in Parkinson's disease. One might assume that degeneration would proceed more rapidly as a consequence of dopamine metabolism, if neuromelanin were not present. However, ventral tegmental neurons do not have the same density of neuromelanin; and I believe that they do not degenerate to the extent of substantia nigra neurons. What might account for this apparent difference in neuronal susceptibility to injury by reactive oxygen?
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