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Author Notes:

Correspondence: Lih-Shen Chin, PhD Department of Pharmacology Emory University School of Medicine 1510 Clifton Road Atlanta, GA 30322−3090. Tel: 404−727−0361; Fax: 404−727−0365; E-mail: chinl@pharm.emory.edu

Acknowledgments: We thank Dr. Charles R. Gerfen and the Neurological Disease and Stroke/University of California Los Angeles Repository for Parkinson's disease Mouse Models for providing the DJ-1 knockout mice.


Research Funding:

This work was supported by grants from National Institutes of Health (NS054597, NS047199, NS050650, AG021489, MH01194, and RR00165).


  • PARK7
  • substantia nigra
  • striatum
  • electron microscopy
  • primate brain
  • distribution

Selective Enrichment of DJ-1 Protein in Primate Striatal Neuronal Processes: Implications for Parkinson's Disease


Journal Title:

Journal of Comparative Neurology


Volume 500, Number 3


, Pages 585-599

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Mutations in DJ-1 cause autosomal recessive, early-onset Parkinson's disease (PD). The precise function and distribution of DJ-1 in the central nervous system remain unclear. In this study, we performed a comprehensive analysis of DJ-1 expression in human, monkey, and rat brains using antibodies that recognize distinct, evolutionarily conserved epitopes of DJ-1. We found that DJ-1 displays region-specific neuronal and glial labeling in human and non-human primate brain, sharply contrasting the primarily neuronal expression pattern observed throughout rat brain. Further immunohistochemical analysis of DJ-1 expression in human and non-human primate brains showed that DJ-1 protein is expressed in neurons within the substantia nigra pars compacta and striatum, two regions critically involved in PD pathogenesis. Moreover, immunoelectron microscopic analysis revealed a selective enrichment of DJ-1 within primate striatal axons, presynaptic terminals, and dendritic spines with respect to the DJ-1 expression in prefrontal cortex. Together, these findings indicate neuronal and synaptic expression of DJ-1 in primate subcortical brain regions and suggest a physiological role for DJ-1 in the survival and/or function of nigral-striatal neurons.

Copyright information:

© 2006 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.

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