1-Methyl-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline-6,7-diol, commonly known as salsolinol, is a compound
derived from dopamine. It was first discovered in 1973 and has gained attention for its role in
Parkinson’s disease. Salsolinol and its derivatives were claimed to play a role in the pathogenesis of
Parkinson’s disease as a neurotoxin that induces apoptosis of dopaminergic neurons due to its structural
similarity to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) and its ability to induce Parkinsonism.
In this article, we discussed the biosynthesis, distribution and blood-brain barrier permeability
of salsolinol. The roles of salsolinol in a healthy brain, particularly the interactions with enzymes,
hormone and catecholamine, were reviewed. Finally, we discussed the involvement of salsolinol and
its derivatives in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease.