Skip to main content


Research Groups

Gilberto Fisone, Ph.D.

Gilberto Fisone

Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology

Research Focus

We study the mechanisms of action of drugs that act at the level of the basal ganglia, a group of subcortical structures involved in the execution of voluntary movements, as well as in cognitive, motivational and emotional aspects of motor function. The striatum, which is the major component of the basal ganglia, is targeted by substances of abuse and by dopaminergic drugs used in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia and ADHD. Our goal is to identify molecular events occurring in distinct populations of striatal neurons and to assess their role in physiological and pathological responses. This is achieved by: (1) examining changes produced by drugs on specific components of the signal transduction machinery, and (2) determining the physiological significance of these changes through behavioral analyses of transgenic mice. Using this approach we have identified key molecular events underlying the actions of caffeine, cannabinoids and morphine. Currently, we are investigating the molecular basis of the severe motor complications, or dyskinesia, caused by prolonged administration of L-DOPA, the most common antiparkinsonian medication. In other studies, we are examining the effects produced by dopamine receptor agonists and antagonists, including typical and atypical antipsychotic drugs, on signal transduction processes in the basal ganglia and other brain regions.

Selected Publications

Lindskog M, Pozzi L, Svenningsson P, Yong K, Fienberg A, Bibb J, Fredholm BB, Nairn AC, Greengard P, Fisone G

Involvement of DARPP-32 phosphorylation in the stimulant action of caffeine.

Nature 418: 774-778, 2002

Lindgren N, Usiello A, Goiny M, Haycock J, Erbs E, Greengard P, Hökfelt T, Borrelli E, Fisone G

Distinct roles of dopamine D2L and D2S receptor isoforms in the regulation of protein phosphorylation at presynaptic and postsynaptic sites.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 100: 4305-4309, 2003

Picconi B, Centonze D, Håkansson K, Bernardi G, Greengard P, Fisone G, Cenci MA, Calabresi P

Loss of bidirectional striatal synaptic plasticity in dyskinetic parkinsonian rats.

Nature Neuroscience 6: 501-506, 2003

Andersson M, Usiello A, Borgkvist A, Pozzi L, Dominguez C, Fienberg AA, Svenningsson P, Fredholm BB, Borrelli E, Greengard P, Fisone G.

Cannabinoid action depends on phosphorylation of DARPP-32 at the PKA site in striatal projection neurons.

Journal of Neuroscience 25: 8432-8438, 2005

Borgkvist A, Usiello A, Greengard P, Fisone G.

Activation of the cAMP/PKA/DARPP-32 signaling pathway is required for morphine psychomotor stimulation but not for morphine reward.

Neuropsychopharmacology 32: 1995-2003, 2007

Santini E, Valjent E, Usiello A, Carta M, Borgkvist A, Girault J-A, Hervé D, Greengard P, Fisone G

Critical involvement of cAMP/DARPP-32 and extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase signaling in L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia.

Journal of Neuroscience 27: 6995-7005, 2007

Professor Gilberto Fisone

08-524 873 75
08-32 09 88
Department of Neuroscience
Karolinska Institutet
Retzius väg 8
S-17177 Stockholm, Sweden

Select main subject