Dose-dependent differences in the development of reserpine-induced oral dyskinesia in rats: support for a model of tardive dyskinesia

Janet Neisewander, Edward Castañeda, Debra A. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Rats treated with reserpine develop spontaneous orofacial dyskinesia that has features similar to tardive dyskinesia (TD) in humans. In contrast to TD, however, reserpine-induced oral dyskinesia develops rapidly reaching a maximal level within 3 days at a dose of 1 mg/kg per day. The present study examined whether rats administered lower doses of reserpine would develop the oral dyskinesia at a slower rate, similar to the protracted development of TD. Rats were administered 0, 0.01, 0.05, 0.1, or 1.0 mg/kg reserpine subcutaneously every other day for 100 days. Oral dyskinesia was measured by recording the incidence of tongue protrusions for 30 min on days 1, 4, 10, 20, 40, 60, and 100. The time course of the development of reserpine-induced oral dyskinesia varied dose-dependently. The response was evident within 4 days at 1 mg/kg, within 20 days at 0.1 mg/kg, within 60 days at 0.05 mg/kg, and was not evident at 0.01 mg/kg at any time during the 100 days of treatment. The protracted development of reserpine-induced oral dyskinesia at the lower doses is consistent with TD. Doses of reserpine that produced an increase in tongue protrusions also produced a 90-95% depletion of dopamine and an increase in the ratio of dopamine metabolites to dopamine in the caudate-putamen. The disruption of dopamine neurotransmission may be involved in development of the oral dyskinesia. Furthermore, it is suggested that the 1 mg/kg dose of reserpine may induce neurochemical changes similar to that produced by long-term neuroleptic treatment, but at an accelerated rate, thereby providing a new efficient model of TD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-84
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - Sep 1 1994


  • Caudate-putamen
  • Dopamine
  • Dose-response
  • High performance liquid chromatography
  • Oral dyskinesia
  • Rats
  • Reserpine
  • Serotonin
  • Tardive dyskinesia
  • Time course
  • Tongue protrusions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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