Desipramine rescues emotional memory deficit induced by low doses of reserpine

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Emotional memory deficit is a well-known complication in early Parkinson’s disease. However, its molecular mechanism is still not well known. To address this issue, we examined the cue-related fear-conditioning task and long-term potentiation (LTP) of the thalamus to the lateral amygdala in rats treated with low doses of reserpine (Res). We found that low-dose Res treatment impaired emotional memory and LTP. We also found that exogenous upregulation of norepinephrine (NE) ameliorated the impairment of LTP by facilitating β-adrenergic receptors. Finally, acute treatment with NE or desipramine rescued the impaired emotional memory induced by a low-dose of Res. These results imply a pivotal role for NE in synaptic plasticity and associative fear memory in rats treated with low doses of Res and suggest that desipramine is a potential candidate for treating Parkinson’s disease-related emotional memory deficit.

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