• brain inflammation;
  • dopaminergic neurodegeneration;
  • macrophage depletion;
  • Parkinson’s disease;
  • ulcerative colitis

J. Neurochem. (2010) 114, 1687–1700.


Peripheral inflammation could play a role in the origin and development of certain neurodegenerative disorders. To ascertain this possibility, a model of dopaminergic neurodegeneration based on the injection of the inflammatory agent lipopolysaccharide (LPS) within the substantia nigra was assayed in rats with ulcerative colitis (UC) induced by the ingestion of dextran sulphate sodium. We found an increase in the levels of inflammatory markers from serum (tumor necrosis factor-α, IL-1β, IL-6 and the acute phase protein C-reactive protein) and substantia nigra (tumor necrosis factor-α, IL-1β, IL-6, inducible nitric oxide synthase, intercellular adhesion molecule-1, microglial and astroglial populations) of rats with UC, as well as an alteration of the blood–brain barrier permeability and the loss of dopaminergic neurons. UC reinforced the inflammatory and deleterious effects of LPS. On the contrary, clodronate encapsulated in liposomes (ClodLip), which depletes peripheral macrophages, ameliorated the effect of LPS and UC. Peripheral inflammation might represent a risk factor in the development of Parkinson’s disease.