L-DOPA: From a biologically inactive amino acid to a successful therapeutic agent

  title={L-DOPA: From a biologically inactive amino acid to a successful therapeutic agent
  author={Oleh Hornykiewicz},
  journal={Amino Acids},
Summary. The article traces the development of research on the naturally occurring amino acid L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-dopa), from the first synthesis of its D,L racemate in 1911, and the isolation of its L-isomer from seedling of Vicia faba beans to the amino acid's successful application, from 1961 onward, as the most efficacious drug treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD). Upon its isolation from legumes in 1913, L-dopa was declared to be biologically inactive. However, two early… 

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Enzymatic assay for perfluoro-tagged metabolites of l-DOPA using crude lysate from E. coli transformed with pKKAADCII

The enzymatic assay described here provides an efficient and cost-effective tool for screening new compounds for use in the fluorine imaging of neural pathways and is likely to follow the biosynthesis path for dopamine in vivo and are potentially useful in magnetic resonance studies.

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Neurotransmitter-like actions of L-DOPA.

Is l-dopa an endogenous neurotransmitter?

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It was concluded that L-dopa's principal therapeutic effects in Parkinson's disease are consistent with its transformation to DA in the striatum.

Aromatic amino acids and modification of parkinsonism.

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Chemical structure and sympathomimetic action of amines

The elucidation of the structure of the active principle of the stupra-renal medulla by the work of Abell and its synthesis by Stolz 7 and by Dakin8 led to the physiological investigation of substances nearly related to it in chemical structure.

Über das Vorkommen von Katecholaminen und von 3,4-Dihydroxyphenylalanin (Dopa) im Auge

  • H. Bernheimer
  • Biology
    Naunyn-Schmiedebergs Archiv für experimentelle Pathologie und Pharmakologie
  • 2004
The occurrence of dopa in the ocular tissue might possibly be connected with the metabolism of melanin and the occurrence of noradrenaline in the lens, in the vitreous humour and in the retina has been detected.

Concentration and Distribution of “Encephalin” in the Brain of Humans, and Animals

  • W. RaabW. Gigee
  • Biology, Medicine
    Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine. Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine
  • 1951
Colorimetrie assay of a large number of human and animal brains for “encephalin” revealed a rather uniform pattern of intracerebral distribution in various species, which suggests either a selective absorption of this substance by the brain or its conversion into encephalin.

Enzymatic decarboxylation of isomers and derivatives of dihydroxyphenylalanine.


Evidence is presented suggesting that the rise in blood pressure following the injection of dopa is caused by its conversion into hydroxytyramine, a pressor amine.