Male Sprague-Dawley rats (8-9 weeks-old) were exposed for three days (acute exposure) or eight weeks (subchronic exposure) to purified air or concentrated ambient fine particles, PM2.5 (≤2.5 μm; 15 to 18-fold of ambient air; 370-445 μg/m3). In membranes from rat prefrontal cortex (PFC) or striatum, the density and function of dopamine D2-like receptors (D2Rs) were assessed by [3H]-spiperone binding and dopamine-stimulated [35S]-GTPγS binding, respectively. Glial activation was evaluated by immunoperoxidase labeling of the glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). In the PFC, no significant changes in D2R density or signaling were observed after the acute and subchronic exposure to PM2.5. In the striatum, acute exposure to PM2.5 decreased D2R density, with no effect on signaling efficacy, whereas subchronic exposure did not affect D2R density but reduced signaling efficacy. Both acute and subchronic exposure to PM2.5 induced reactive gliosis in the striatum but not in the PFC. These results indicate that exposure to PM2.5 induces astrocyte activation and alters striatal dopaminergic transmission.