Neurotransmitter changes in rat brain regions following glyphosate exposure

María Aránzazu Martínez, Irma Ares, José Luis Rodríguez, Marta Martínez, María Rosa Martínez-Larrañaga, Arturo Anadón

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62 Scopus citations


The effects of glyphosate oral exposure (35, 75, 150 and 800 mg/kg bw, 6 days) on brain region monoamine levels of male Wistar rats were examined. Glyphosate-treated rats (35, 75, 150 and 800 mg/kg bw, 6 days), had no visible injury, i.e., no clinical signs of dysfunction were observed. After last dose of glyphosate, serotonin (5-HT), dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine (NE) and its metabolites levels were determined in the brain regions striatum, hippocampus, prefrontal, cortex, hypothalamus and midbrain, by HPLC. Glyphosate caused statistically significant changes in the 5-HT and its metabolite 5-hydroxy-3-indolacetic acid (5-HIAA), DA and its metabolites 3,4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) and homovanillic acid (HVA), and NE and its metabolite 3-metoxy-4-hydroxyphenylethyleneglycol (MHPG) levels in a brain regional- and dose-related manner. Moreover, glyphosate, dose-dependent, evoked a statistically significant increase in 5-HT turnover in striatum and hypothalamus and in DA turnover in prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, and a statistically significant decrease in NE turnover in prefrontal cortex and hypothalamus. The present findings indicate that glyphosate significantly altered central nervous system (CNS) monoaminergic neurotransmitters in a brain regional- and dose-related manner, effects that may contribute to the overall spectrum of neurotoxicity caused by this herbicide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)212-219
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Research
StatePublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by Project (ALI-BIRD-CM Program) Ref. S2013/ABI-2728 from Comunidad de Madrid , and Project Ref. RTA2015-00010-C03-03 from Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad , Spain.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017


  • Brain regions
  • Glyphosate
  • Male rats
  • Monoaminergic neurotransmitters
  • Neurotoxicology


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