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Genes, Brain, and Behavior

Sueun Lee, Sohi Kang, Mary Jasmin Ang, Juhwan Kim, Jong Choon Kim, Sung-Ho Kim, Tae-Il Jeon, Chaeyong Jung, Seung-Soon Im, Changjong Moon
Schizophrenia is a hereditary disease that ~1% of the worldwide population develops. Many studies have investigated possible underlying genes related to schizophrenia. Recently, clinical studies suggested sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) as a susceptibility gene in patients with schizophrenia. SREBP controls cellular lipid homeostasis by three isoforms: SREBP-1a, SREBP-1c, and SREBP-2. This study used SREBP-1c knockout (KO) mice to examine whether a deficiency in SREBP-1c would affect their emotional and psychiatric behaviors...
November 14, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
T P O'Leary, H M Mantolino, K Stover, R E Brown
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that leads to age-related cognitive and sensori-motor dysfunction. There is an increased understanding that motor dysfunction contributes to overall AD severity, and a need to ameliorate these impairments. The 5xFAD mouse develops the neuropathology, cognitive and motor impairments observed in AD, and thus may be a valuable animal model to study motor deficits in AD. Therefore, we assessed age-related changes in motor ability of male and female 5xFAD mice from 3-16 months of age, using a battery of behavioural tests...
November 13, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Jan Vevera, Mehdi Zarrei, Hana Hartmannová, Ivana Jedličková, Dita Mušálková, Anna Přistoupilová, Petra Oliveriusová, Helena Trešlová, Lenka Nosková, Kateřina Hodaňová, Viktor Stránecký, Václav Jiřička, Marek Preiss, Kateřina Příhodová, Jana Šaligová, John Wei, Marc Woodbury-Smith, Anthony J Bleyer, Stephen W Scherer, Stanislav Kmoch
The genetic correlates of extreme impulsive violence are poorly understood, and there have been no studies that have systematically characterized a large group of affected individuals both clinically and genetically. We performed a genome-wide rare copy number variant (CNV) analysis in 281 males from 4 Czech prisons who met strict clinical criteria for extreme impulsive violence. Inclusion criteria included age > 18 years, an ICD 10 diagnosis of Dissocial Personality Disorder, and the absence of an organic brain disorder...
November 8, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Shu Liu, Ang Li, Meifang Zhu, Jin Li, Bing Liu
Cortical myelination, which is essential for interneuronal communication and neurodevelopment, has been reported to be under genetic control. However, the degree to which genes contribute to the variability of myelination, the pattern of genetic control, and how genes influence the organization of myelination are largely unknown. To answer these questions, the present study calculated heritability estimates for myelination of the cortical regions using the high quality structural MRI scans from the Human Connectome Project pedigree cohort (n = 873, 383/490 M/F, 22-36 years of age)...
November 5, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Emma E M Knowles, Samuel R Mathias, Josephine Mollon, Amanda Rodrigue, Marinka M G Koenis, Thomas D Dyer, Harald H H Goring, Joanne E Curran, Rene L Olvera, Ravi Duggirala, Laura Almasy, John Blangero, David C Glahn
Processing speed is a psychological construct that refers to the speed with which an individual can perform any cognitive operation. Processing speed correlates strongly with general cognitive ability, declines sharply with age and is impaired across a number of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Thus, identifying genes that influence processing speed will likely improve understanding of the genetics of intelligence, biological aging and the etiologies of numerous disorders. Previous genetics studies of processing speed have relied on simple phenotypes (eg, mean reaction time) derived from single tasks...
October 31, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Nicholas I Cilz, Adi Cymerblit-Sabba, W Scott Young
The role of the hippocampus in social memory and behavior is under intense investigation. Oxytocin (Oxt) and vasopressin (Avp) are two neuropeptides with many central actions related to social cognition. Oxt- and Avp-expressing fibers are abundant in the hippocampus and receptors for both peptides are seen throughout the different subfields, suggesting that Oxt and Avp modulate hippocampal-dependent processes. In this review, we first focus on the anatomical sources of Oxt and Avp input to the hippocampus and consider the distribution of their corresponding receptors in different hippocampal subfields and neuronal populations...
October 30, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Shkelzen Shabani, Bryan Schmidt, Bikalpa Ghimire, Sydney K Houlton, Laura Hellmuth, Erika Mojica, Tamara J Phillips
Binge methamphetamine users have higher methamphetamine consumption, relapse rates, and depression-like symptoms during early periods of withdrawal, compared to non-binge users. The impact of varying durations of methamphetamine abstinence on depression-like symptoms and on subsequent methamphetamine intake was examined in mice genetically prone to binge-level methamphetamine consumption. Binge-level methamphetamine intake was induced using a multiple-bottle choice procedure in which mice were offered 1 water drinking tube and 3 tubes containing increasing concentrations of methamphetamine in water, or 4 water tubes (control group)...
October 30, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Marie-H Monfils, Laura Agee
Everyday life abounds with information and stimuli originating from a multitude of sources. But how do individuals discern important information from that which can or should be disregarded? To date, most non-human animal models of learning focus on creating an association between a conditioned stimulus (CS) and an unconditioned stimulus (US) through direct experience (e.g., fear conditioning; FC). This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
October 30, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Ali Ghobbeh, Rebecca J Taugher, Syed M Alam, Rong Fan, Ryan T LaLumiere, John A Wemmie
Pavlovian fear conditioning has been shown to depend on ASIC1A, however it is unknown whether conditioning to rewarding stimuli also depends on ASIC1A. Here we tested the hypothesis that ASIC1A contributes to Pavlovian conditioning to a non-drug reward. We found effects of ASIC1A disruption depended on the relationship between the conditional stimulus (CS) and the unconditional stimulus (US), which was varied between five experiments. In experiment 1, when the CS preceded the US signaling an upcoming reward, Asic1a-/- mice exhibited a deficit in conditioning compared to Asic1a+/+ mice...
October 29, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Robyn A Grant, Aimee A Wong, Emre Fertan, Richard E Brown
Active whisking in mice and rats is one of the fastest behaviours known in mammals and is used to guide complex behaviours such as exploration and navigation. During object contact, whisker movements are actively controlled and undergo robust changes in timing, speed and position. This study quantifies whisker movements in 6-7 month old male and female 5xFAD mice, and their C57/SJL F1 wildtype (WT) controls. As well as genotype, we examined sex differences and the effects of retinal degeneration (rd). Mice were filmed using a high-speed video camera at 500fps, under infrared light while behaving freely in three tasks: object exploration, sequential object exploration and tunnel running...
October 23, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Tong Liu, Ying Wang, Yue Tian, Jin Zhang, Jianjian Zhao, Aike Guo
In Drosophila, pheromones play a crucial role in regulating courtship behaviors. In males, female aphrodisiac pheromones promote male-female courtship, and male antiaphrodisiac pheromones inhibit male-male courtship. Previous studies have reported that receptor proteins belonging to the pickpocket (ppk) family, ionotropic receptor family and gustatory receptor family are required for pheromone detection and normal courtship. However, none of them has been demonstrated to be sufficient for sensing pheromones after ectopic expression in originally unresponsive cells...
October 22, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Diana Yae Sakae, Lauriane Ramet, Annabelle Henrion, Odile Poirel, Stéphane Jamain, Salah El Mestikawy, Stéphanie Daumas
The atypical vesicular glutamate transporter VGLUT3 is present in subpopulations of GABAergic interneurons in the cortex and the hippocampus, in subgroups of serotoninergic neurons in raphe nuclei, and in cholinergic interneurons in the striatum. C56BL/6N mice that no longer express VGLUT3 (VGLUT3-/- ) display anxiety-associated phenotype, increased spontaneous and cocaine-induced locomotor activity and decreased haloperidol-induced catalepsy. Inbred mouse strains differ markedly in their sensitivity to anxiety and behavioral responses elicited by drugs...
October 15, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Kimberly P Keil, Sunjay Sethi, Machelle D Wilson, Jill L Silverman, Isaac N Pessah, Pamela J Lein
Dendritic morphology is a critical determinant of neuronal connectivity, and calcium signaling plays a predominant role in shaping dendrites. Altered dendritic morphology and genetic mutations in calcium signaling are both associated with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs). In this study we tested the hypothesis that dendritic arborization and NDD-relevant behavioral phenotypes are altered by human mutations that modulate calcium-dependent signaling pathways implicated in NDDs. The dendritic morphology of pyramidal neurons in CA1 hippocampus and somatosensory cortex was quantified in Golgi-stained brain sections from juvenile mice of both sexes expressing either a human gain-of-function mutation in ryanodine receptor 1 (T4826I-RYR1), a human CGG repeat expansion (170-200 CGG repeats) in the fragile X mental retardation gene 1 (FMR1 premutation), both mutations (double mutation; DM), or wildtype (WT) mice...
October 12, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Kacper Kondrakiewicz, Mateusz Kostecki, Weronika Szadzińska, Ewelina Knapska
Different rat and mouse models are used in studies of social interactions. Simple behavioral measures, which are commonly used in the laboratory, allow to perform relatively short experiments and use multiple brain manipulation techniques. However, too much focus on the simplest behavioral models generates a serious risk of reducing ecological validity or even studying phenomena which would never happen outside of the laboratory. In this review, we discuss the suitability of mice and rats as model organisms for studying social behaviors, with focus on social transmission of fear paradigms...
October 11, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Xiaojing Guo, Jialei Yang, Jiao Huang, Zhaoxia Chen, Xulong Wu, Lulu Zhu, Guifeng Huang, Jianxiong Long, Li Su
Schizophrenia (SCZ) and bipolar disorder (BD) are two major neuropsychiatric diseases that are the most substantial causes of disability and mortality worldwide. CTNNB1 encodes beta-catenin, an important protein in canonical Wnt signaling. We aimed to investigate the association between the rs2953 of CTNNB1 and the risk of SCZ and BD and to further explore the function of rs2953. A total of 1658 samples (548 SCZ cases, 512 BD cases, and 598 controls) were examined in terms of the genotype of CTNNB1 rs2953. The mRNA expression level of CTNNB1 significantly increased in the SCZ and BD groups compared with that in the control group...
October 2, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Joseph Scarborough, Flavia Mueller, Ulrike Weber-Stadlbauer, Juliet Richetto, Urs Meyer
Hemizygous microdeletion at the chromosomal locus 22q11.2 is a copy number variation with strong genetic linkage to schizophrenia and related disorders. This association, along with its phenotypic overlap with the 22q11.2 microdeletion syndrome, has motivated the establishment of Df[h22q11]/+ mice, in which the human 22q11.2 orthologous region is deleted. Previous investigations using this model revealed the presence of reduced prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle reflex, a form of sensorimotor gating known to impaired in a number of psychiatric disorders...
September 28, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Arie Kim, Sehoon Keum, Hee-Sup Shin
Empathy enables social mammals to recognize and share emotion with others and is well-documented in non-human primates. During the past few years, systematic observations have revealed that a primal form of empathy also exists in rodents, indicating that empathy has an evolutionary continuity. Now, using rodents exhibiting emotional empathy, the molecular and cellular study of empathy in animals has begun in earnest. In this article, we will review recent reports that indicate that rodents can share states of fear with others, and will try to highlight new understandings of the neural circuitry, biochemistry, and genetics of empathic fear...
September 28, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Claire J Foldi, Darryl W Eyles, John J McGrath, Thomas H J Burne
Advanced paternal age (APA) is associated with an increased risk of adverse health outcomes in offspring, including autism and schizophrenia. In the current study we investigated the behaviour of young (3 month-old; Control), middle aged (12-15 month-old; APA1) and old (24 month-old; APA2) C57BL/6J sires and their adult offspring. Male and female mice were tested at 10 weeks of age on a behavioural test battery including the elevated plus-maze, hole board, light/dark emergence, forced swim test, novelty-suppressed feeding, and for prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle response...
September 27, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Tsutomu Kataoka, Manabu Fuchikami, Shinji Nojima, Nobuyuki Nagashima, Motoaki Araki, Jun Omura, Tatsuhiro Miyagi, Yasumasa Okamoto, Shigeru Morinobu
Impaired fear memory extinction (Ext) is one of the hallmark symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, since the precise mechanism of impaired Ext remains unknown, effective interventions have not yet been established. Recently, hippocampal-prefrontal BDNF activity was shown to be crucial for Ext in naïve rats. We therefore examined whether decreased hippocampal-prefrontal BDNF activity is also involved in the Ext of rats subjected to a single prolonged stress (SPS) as a model of PTSD. BDNF levels were measured by ELISA, and phosphorylation of TrkB was measured by immunohistochemistry in the hippocampus and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of SPS rats...
September 23, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
Price E Dickson, Tyler A Roy, Kathryn A McNaughton, Troy D Wilcox, Padam Kumar, Elissa J Chesler
Sensation seeking is a multifaceted, heritable trait which predicts the development of substance use and abuse in humans; similar phenomena have been observed in rodents. Genetic correlations among sensation seeking and substance use indicate shared biological mechanisms, but the genes and networks underlying these relationships remain elusive. Here, we used a systems genetics approach in the BXD recombinant inbred mouse panel to identify shared genetic mechanisms underlying substance use and preference for sensory stimuli, an intermediate phenotype of sensation seeking...
September 17, 2018: Genes, Brain, and Behavior
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