Effects of oral L-tyrosine administration of CSF tyrosine and homovanillic acid levels in patients with Parkinson's disease

John H. Growdon*, Eldad Melamed, Mary Logue, Franz Hefti, Richard J. Wurtman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

To determine whether 1-tyrosine administration can enhance dopamine synthesis in humans as it does in rats, we measured levels of tyrosine and the major dopamine metabolite, homovanillic acid, in lumbar spinal fluids of 23 patients with Parkinson's disease before and during ingestion of 100 mg/kg/day of tyrosine. Nine patients took 100 mg/kg/day of probenecid in six divided doses for 24 hours prior to each spinal tap; 14 patients did not receive probenecid. L-tyrosine administration significantly increased CSF tyrosine levels in both groups of patients (p<.01) and significantly increased homovanillic acid levels in the group of patients pretreated with probenecid (p<.02). These data indicate that 1-tyrosine administration can increase dopamine turnover in patients with disorders in which physicians wish to enhance dopaminergic neurotransmission.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)827-832
Number of pages6
JournalLife Sciences
Volume30
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - 8 Mar 1982
Externally publishedYes

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