The degradation of high-energy phosphates was recently shown to precede manganese-induced cellular death. We evaluated hypoxanthine, xanthine, uric acid and glutamate levels in the striatum and brainstem of 3- and 20-month-old rats after subchronic oral exposure to manganese (MnCl2, 200 mg/kg/day in young rats, and 50-100 or 200 mg/kg/day in aged rats). Aged rats had higher basal levels of hypoxanthine, xanthine, and glutamate both in the striatum and brainstem than young rats; conversely, basal uric acid levels were lower in the striatum, but higher in the brainstem. Manganese induced a significantly greater increase in hypoxanthine, xanthine, uric acid and glutamate levels in aged rats than in young rats in both brain regions. These findings depict a greater manganese-induced energetic impairment (increases in hypoxanthine and xanthine levels), xanthine oxidase-induced free radical generation (increases in xanthine and uric acid levels), and excitotoxic status (increases in glutamate levels) in aged rats than in young rats. In addition, these findings may also account for a greater manganese toxicity to the nigro-striatal dopaminergic system in aged than in young rats, as shown in a previous work.
Glutamate and catabolites of high-energy phosphates in the striatum and brainstem of young and aged rats subchronically exposed to manganese / Miele, M; Serra, Pier Andrea; Esposito, G; Delogu, Mr; Migheli, Rossana; Rocchitta, Gaia Giovanna Maria; Desole, Maria Speranza. - In: AGING. - ISSN 0394-9532. - 12:5(2000), pp. 393-397.