Molecule of the Week


May 11, 2009

L-Dopa—also known as levodopa, 3-hydroxy-L-tyrosine, and dozens of other names—has been known for at least 90 years as a naturally occurring amino acid that is the biological precursor to the neurotransmitter dopamine. L-Dopa is administered to increase dopamine levels in Parkinson’s disease patients; unlike dopamine, it can cross the blood–brain barrier.

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