The retinal dopamine (DA) deficiency is an important feature of the pathogenesis in Parkinson's disease (PD) visual dysfunction. Systemic inhibition of complex I (rotenone) in rats has been proposed as a model of PD. In this study, we investigated whether systemic inhibition of complex I can induce impairment of DA-ergic cells in the retina, similar to the destruction of retinal cells found in PD patients. Rotenone (2.5mg/kg i.p., daily) was administered over 60 days. Neurochemically, rotenone treated rats showed a depletion of DA in the striatum and substantia nigra (SN). In addition, the number of retinal DA-ergic amacrine cells was significantly reduced in the rotenone treated animals. This study is the first one giving highlight towards a deeper understanding of systemic complex I inhibition (rotenone as an environmental toxin) and the connection between both, DA-ergic degeneration in the nigrostriatal pathway, and in the DA-ergic amacrine cells of the retina.