You are not currently logged in.
Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:
If you need an accessible version of this item please contact JSTOR User Support
Preview not available
The hypothesis is presented, based on the chemical structure of neuromelanin, that one of its functions in the catecholamine neurons in the brain is to protect the cell against toxic quinones (such as dopaminochrome and noradrenochrome, or their dihydroxy isomers) produced from the catecholamines dopamine and noradrenaline (and possibly adrenaline) during the course of prostaglandin synthesis by the enzyme prostaglandin H synthetase, or possibly by spontaneous oxidation. One aminochrome-adrenochrome-has been shown to be neurotoxic and to have psychotomimetic properties in humans. Depending on the site of production these compounds may be involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease or schizophrenia.
Proceedings: Biological Sciences © 1996 Royal Society