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Botox can reach the brain, researchers say.
Caleo’s team traced the movement of botulinum neurotoxins in mice and rats. The team made injections into the whisker muscles, the hippocampus, and the superior colliculus, a brain region that receives input from the eye. Using protein analysis and microscopic examination of the rodents’ brain tissue, the researchers found that, within three days, active forms of botulinum neurotoxin had migrated from the whisker muscles to the brain stem, from one hippocampus to the hippocampus on the opposite side of the brain, and from the superior colliculus back to the eye.
Brain cell activity was disrupted both where botulinum neurotoxin was injected and in some of these distant but connected sites. Caleo and his colleagues noted in particular that the effects of the botulinum neurotoxin injection on the hippocampus were still present six months later.
In March, researchers in Canada found that injected Botox migrates to nearby muscles.(This post was updated at 5:45 p.m. to add links and expand the discussion of past studies and the new Italian research.)