1. Extensive studies in parkinsonian animals show that nicotine protects against NIGROSTRIATIAL damage, findings that may explain the well-established decline in Parkinson’s disease incidence with tobacco use. In addition, recent work shows that nicotine reduces L-dopa-induced abnormal involuntary movements, a debilitating complication of L-dopa therapy for Parkinson’s disease. These combined observations suggest that nAChR stimulation may represent a useful treatment strategy for Parkinson’s disease for neuroprotection and symptomatic treatment.
NIGROSTRIATIAL - BASAL GANGLIA, STRIATUM
2. Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder involving motor and cognitive dysfunction. Currently, there is no effective treatment either for symptomatic relief or disease modification. This relates, in part, to a lack of knowledge of the underlying neurochemical abnormalities, including cholinergic receptor status in the BASAL GANGLIA.
Neuropathological hallmarks of PSP include neurofibrillar tangles, neuropil threads and tufted astrocytes which are found predominantly within the BASAL GANGLIA, midbrain, pontine reticular formations and to a lesser extent, the thalamus.6 The pathological inclusions comprise insoluble aggregates of four‐repeat τ phosphoprotein. The basal ganglia, in particular the STRIATUM (caudate and putamen) and its connections, are involved in motor and cognitive aspects of PSP.