Publisher: Elsevier   (Total: 3147 journals)

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Showing 1 - 200 of 3147 Journals sorted alphabetically
Academic Pediatrics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 39, SJR: 1.655, CiteScore: 2)
Academic Radiology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 1.015, CiteScore: 2)
Accident Analysis & Prevention     Partially Free   (Followers: 106, SJR: 1.462, CiteScore: 3)
Accounting Forum     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 28, SJR: 0.932, CiteScore: 2)
Accounting, Organizations and Society     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 44, SJR: 1.771, CiteScore: 3)
Achievements in the Life Sciences     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Acta Anaesthesiologica Taiwanica     Open Access   (Followers: 6)
Acta Astronautica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 445, SJR: 0.758, CiteScore: 2)
Acta Automatica Sinica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Acta Biomaterialia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 30, SJR: 1.967, CiteScore: 7)
Acta Colombiana de Cuidado Intensivo     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Acta de Investigación Psicológica     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Acta Ecologica Sinica     Open Access   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.18, CiteScore: 1)
Acta Histochemica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.661, CiteScore: 2)
Acta Materialia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 325, SJR: 3.263, CiteScore: 6)
Acta Mathematica Scientia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.504, CiteScore: 1)
Acta Mechanica Solida Sinica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.542, CiteScore: 1)
Acta Oecologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.834, CiteScore: 2)
Acta Otorrinolaringologica (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription  
Acta Otorrinolaringológica Española     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2, SJR: 0.307, CiteScore: 0)
Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica B     Open Access   (Followers: 2, SJR: 1.793, CiteScore: 6)
Acta Psychologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 26, SJR: 1.331, CiteScore: 2)
Acta Sociológica     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Acta Tropica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.052, CiteScore: 2)
Acta Urológica Portuguesa     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Actas Dermo-Sifiliograficas     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.374, CiteScore: 1)
Actas Dermo-Sifiliográficas (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Actas Urológicas Españolas     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.344, CiteScore: 1)
Actas Urológicas Españolas (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Actualites Pharmaceutiques     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.19, CiteScore: 0)
Actualites Pharmaceutiques Hospitalieres     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Acupuncture and Related Therapies     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Acute Pain     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15, SJR: 2.671, CiteScore: 5)
Ad Hoc Networks     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.53, CiteScore: 4)
Addictive Behaviors     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18, SJR: 1.29, CiteScore: 3)
Addictive Behaviors Reports     Open Access   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.755, CiteScore: 2)
Additive Manufacturing     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13, SJR: 2.611, CiteScore: 8)
Additives for Polymers     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 22)
Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 189, SJR: 4.09, CiteScore: 13)
Advanced Engineering Informatics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13, SJR: 1.167, CiteScore: 4)
Advanced Powder Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 17, SJR: 0.694, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Accounting     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.277, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Agronomy     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 17, SJR: 2.384, CiteScore: 5)
Advances in Anesthesia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 30, SJR: 0.126, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Antiviral Drug Design     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Applied Mathematics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.992, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Applied Mechanics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12, SJR: 1.551, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Applied Microbiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 24, SJR: 2.089, CiteScore: 5)
Advances In Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15, SJR: 0.572, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Biological Regulation     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4, SJR: 2.61, CiteScore: 7)
Advances in Botanical Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.686, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Cancer Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 35, SJR: 3.043, CiteScore: 6)
Advances in Carbohydrate Chemistry and Biochemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9, SJR: 1.453, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Catalysis     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 1.992, CiteScore: 5)
Advances in Cell Aging and Gerontology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Cellular and Molecular Biology of Membranes and Organelles     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Advances in Chemical Engineering     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 29, SJR: 0.156, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Child Development and Behavior     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.713, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Chronic Kidney Disease     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11, SJR: 1.316, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Clinical Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26, SJR: 1.562, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Colloid and Interface Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 21, SJR: 1.977, CiteScore: 8)
Advances in Computers     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14, SJR: 0.205, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Dermatology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 16)
Advances in Developmental Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Advances in Digestive Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 13)
Advances in DNA Sequence-Specific Agents     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Advances in Drug Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26)
Advances in Ecological Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 45, SJR: 2.524, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Engineering Software     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 30, SJR: 1.159, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Experimental Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Advances in Experimental Social Psychology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 51, SJR: 5.39, CiteScore: 8)
Advances in Exploration Geophysics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Fluorine Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Advances in Food and Nutrition Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 68, SJR: 0.591, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Fuel Cells     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 17)
Advances in Genetics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 21, SJR: 1.354, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Genome Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12, SJR: 12.74, CiteScore: 13)
Advances in Geophysics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8, SJR: 1.193, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Heat Transfer     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26, SJR: 0.368, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Heterocyclic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.749, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Human Factors/Ergonomics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26)
Advances in Imaging and Electron Physics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4, SJR: 0.193, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Immunology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 37, SJR: 4.433, CiteScore: 6)
Advances in Inorganic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10, SJR: 1.163, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Insect Physiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2, SJR: 1.938, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Integrative Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 0.176, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Intl. Accounting     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Advances in Life Course Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.682, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Lipobiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Advances in Magnetic and Optical Resonance     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Advances in Marine Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 21, SJR: 0.88, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Mathematics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 17, SJR: 3.027, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Medical Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9, SJR: 0.694, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Medicinal Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Microbial Physiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5, SJR: 1.158, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Molecular and Cell Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 26)
Advances in Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Advances in Molecular Toxicology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.182, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Nanoporous Materials     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Oncobiology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Organ Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Advances in Organometallic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 18, SJR: 1.875, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Parallel Computing     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.174, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Parasitology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.579, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Pediatrics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 27, SJR: 0.461, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Pharmaceutical Sciences     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 19)
Advances in Pharmacology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 17, SJR: 1.536, CiteScore: 3)
Advances in Physical Organic Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10, SJR: 0.574, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Phytomedicine     Full-text available via subscription  
Advances in Planar Lipid Bilayers and Liposomes     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.109, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Plant Biochemistry and Molecular Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11)
Advances in Plant Pathology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Porous Media     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Advances in Protein Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 19)
Advances in Protein Chemistry and Structural Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 20, SJR: 0.791, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Psychology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 69)
Advances in Quantum Chemistry     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.371, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Radiation Oncology     Open Access   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.263, CiteScore: 1)
Advances in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.101, CiteScore: 0)
Advances in Space Biology and Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Advances in Space Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 431, SJR: 0.569, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in Structural Biology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Advances in Surgery     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13, SJR: 0.555, CiteScore: 2)
Advances in the Study of Behavior     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 37, SJR: 2.208, CiteScore: 4)
Advances in Veterinary Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 20)
Advances in Veterinary Science and Comparative Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15)
Advances in Virus Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 2.262, CiteScore: 5)
Advances in Water Resources     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 57, SJR: 1.551, CiteScore: 3)
Aeolian Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.117, CiteScore: 3)
Aerospace Science and Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 393, SJR: 0.796, CiteScore: 3)
AEU - Intl. J. of Electronics and Communications     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.42, CiteScore: 2)
African J. of Emergency Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 6, SJR: 0.296, CiteScore: 0)
Ageing Research Reviews     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12, SJR: 3.671, CiteScore: 9)
Aggression and Violent Behavior     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 489, SJR: 1.238, CiteScore: 3)
Agri Gene     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.13, CiteScore: 0)
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18, SJR: 1.818, CiteScore: 5)
Agricultural Systems     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 32, SJR: 1.156, CiteScore: 4)
Agricultural Water Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 47, SJR: 1.272, CiteScore: 3)
Agriculture and Agricultural Science Procedia     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Agriculture and Natural Resources     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 58, SJR: 1.747, CiteScore: 4)
Ain Shams Engineering J.     Open Access   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.589, CiteScore: 3)
Air Medical J.     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.26, CiteScore: 0)
AKCE Intl. J. of Graphs and Combinatorics     Open Access   (SJR: 0.19, CiteScore: 0)
Alcohol     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12, SJR: 1.153, CiteScore: 3)
Alcoholism and Drug Addiction     Open Access   (Followers: 12)
Alergologia Polska : Polish J. of Allergology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Alexandria Engineering J.     Open Access   (Followers: 2, SJR: 0.604, CiteScore: 3)
Alexandria J. of Medicine     Open Access   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.191, CiteScore: 1)
Algal Research     Partially Free   (Followers: 11, SJR: 1.142, CiteScore: 4)
Alkaloids: Chemical and Biological Perspectives     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Allergologia et Immunopathologia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.504, CiteScore: 1)
Allergology Intl.     Open Access   (Followers: 5, SJR: 1.148, CiteScore: 2)
Alpha Omegan     Full-text available via subscription   (SJR: 3.521, CiteScore: 6)
ALTER - European J. of Disability Research / Revue Européenne de Recherche sur le Handicap     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11, SJR: 0.201, CiteScore: 1)
Alzheimer's & Dementia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 55, SJR: 4.66, CiteScore: 10)
Alzheimer's & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring     Open Access   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.796, CiteScore: 4)
Alzheimer's & Dementia: Translational Research & Clinical Interventions     Open Access   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.108, CiteScore: 3)
Ambulatory Pediatrics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
American Heart J.     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 58, SJR: 3.267, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Cardiology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 67, SJR: 1.93, CiteScore: 3)
American J. of Emergency Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 48, SJR: 0.604, CiteScore: 1)
American J. of Geriatric Pharmacotherapy     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
American J. of Geriatric Psychiatry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15, SJR: 1.524, CiteScore: 3)
American J. of Human Genetics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 40, SJR: 7.45, CiteScore: 8)
American J. of Infection Control     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 29, SJR: 1.062, CiteScore: 2)
American J. of Kidney Diseases     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 37, SJR: 2.973, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 50)
American J. of Medicine Supplements     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 1.967, CiteScore: 2)
American J. of Obstetrics and Gynecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 265, SJR: 2.7, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Ophthalmology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 67, SJR: 3.184, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Ophthalmology Case Reports     Open Access   (Followers: 5, SJR: 0.265, CiteScore: 0)
American J. of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6, SJR: 1.289, CiteScore: 1)
American J. of Otolaryngology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 25, SJR: 0.59, CiteScore: 1)
American J. of Pathology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 32, SJR: 2.139, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Preventive Medicine     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 30, SJR: 2.164, CiteScore: 4)
American J. of Surgery     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 39, SJR: 1.141, CiteScore: 2)
American J. of the Medical Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12, SJR: 0.767, CiteScore: 1)
Ampersand : An Intl. J. of General and Applied Linguistics     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Anaerobe     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4, SJR: 1.144, CiteScore: 3)
Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 67, SJR: 0.138, CiteScore: 0)
Anaesthesia Critical Care & Pain Medicine     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 25, SJR: 0.411, CiteScore: 1)
Anales de Cirugia Vascular     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Anales de Pediatría     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.277, CiteScore: 0)
Anales de Pediatría (English Edition)     Full-text available via subscription  
Anales de Pediatría Continuada     Full-text available via subscription  
Analytic Methods in Accident Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6, SJR: 4.849, CiteScore: 10)
Analytica Chimica Acta     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 44, SJR: 1.512, CiteScore: 5)
Analytica Chimica Acta : X     Open Access  
Analytical Biochemistry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 215, SJR: 0.633, CiteScore: 2)
Analytical Chemistry Research     Open Access   (Followers: 13, SJR: 0.411, CiteScore: 2)
Analytical Spectroscopy Library     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Anesthésie & Réanimation     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Anesthesiology Clinics     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 25, SJR: 0.683, CiteScore: 2)
Angiología     Full-text available via subscription   (SJR: 0.121, CiteScore: 0)
Angiologia e Cirurgia Vascular     Open Access   (Followers: 1, SJR: 0.111, CiteScore: 0)
Animal Behaviour     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 236, SJR: 1.58, CiteScore: 3)
Animal Feed Science and Technology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8, SJR: 0.937, CiteScore: 2)
Animal Reproduction Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7, SJR: 0.704, CiteScore: 2)
Annales d'Endocrinologie     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3, SJR: 0.451, CiteScore: 1)

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Similar Journals
Journal Cover
Journal Prestige (SJR): 2.043
Citation Impact (citeScore): 5
Number of Followers: 7  
  Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
ISSN (Print) 0028-3908 - ISSN (Online) 1873-7064
Published by Elsevier Homepage  [3147 journals]
  • PTC-174, a positive allosteric modulator of NMDA receptors containing
           GluN2C or GluN2D subunits
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Feng Yi, Nirvan Rouzbeh, Kasper B. Hansen, Yuelian Xu, Christopher M. Fanger, Earl Gordon, Kathy Paschetto, Frank S. Menniti, Robert A. VolkmannNMDA receptors are ionotropic glutamate receptors that mediate excitatory neurotransmission. The diverse functions of these receptors are tuned by deploying different combinations of GluN1 and GluN2 subunits (GluN2A-D) to form either diheteromeric NMDA receptors, which contain two GluN1 and two identical GluN2 subunits, or triheteromeric NMDA receptors, which contain two GluN1 and two distinct GluN2 subunits. Here, we characterize PTC-174, a novel positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of receptors containing GluN2C or GluN2D subunits. PTC-174 potentiates maximal current amplitudes by 1.8-fold for diheteromeric GluN1/2B receptors and by > 10-fold for GluN1/2C and GluN1/2D receptors. PTC-174 also potentiates responses from triheteromeric GluN1/2B/2D and GluN1/2A/2C receptors by 4.5-fold and 1.7-fold, respectively. By contrast, PTC-174 produces partial inhibition of responses from diheteromeric GluN1/2A and triheteromeric GluN1/2A/2B receptors. PTC-174 increases potencies of co-agonists glutamate and glycine by 2- to 5-fold at GluN1/2C and GluN1/2D receptors, and NMDA receptor activation facilitates allosteric modulation by PTC-174. At native NMDA receptors in GluN2D-expressing subthalamic nucleus neurons, PTC-174 increases the amplitude of responses to NMDA application and slows the decay of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked by internal capsule stimulation. Furthermore, PTC-174 increases the amplitude and slows the decay of EPSCs in hippocampal interneurons, but has not effect on the amplitudes of NMDA receptor-mediated EPSCs in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. Thus, PTC-174 provides a useful new pharmacological tool to investigate the molecular pharmacology and physiology of GluN2C- and GluN2D-containing NMDA receptors.Graphical abstractImage 1
  • The Role Of Central Amygdala Corticotropin-Releasing Factor In Predator
           Odor Stress-Induced Avoidance Behavior And Escalated Alcohol Drinking In
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Marcus M. Weera, Allyson L. Schreiber, Elizabeth M. Avegno, Nicholas W. GilpinAbstractPost-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized by avoidance of trauma-associated stimuli and amygdala hyperreactivity, and is highly co-morbid with alcohol use disorder (AUD). Our lab uses a predator odor (bobcat urine) stress model that produces conditioned avoidance of an odor-paired context in a subset of rats, mirroring avoidance symptoms that manifest in some but not all humans exposed to trauma. We previously showed that after predator odor stress, Avoiders exhibit escalated operant alcohol self-administration (SA), higher aversion-resistant operant alcohol responding, hyperalgesia, and greater anxiety-like behavior compared to unstressed Controls. We also showed previously that systemic antagonism of corticotropin-releasing factor-1 receptors (CRFR1) reduced escalation of operant alcohol SA in rats not indexed for avoidance, that corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) infusions into the central amygdala (CeA) produced conditioned place avoidance in stress-naïve rats, and that intra-CeA infusion of a CRFR1 antagonist reduced hyperalgesia in Avoiders. Here, we show that avoidance behavior is persistent after repeated predator odor exposure. In addition, Avoiders showed lower weight gain than Controls after predator odor re-exposure. In the brain, higher avoidance was correlated with higher number of c-Fos+ cells and CRF immunoreactivity in the CeA. Finally, we show that intra-CeA CRFR1 antagonism reversed post-stress escalation of alcohol SA and reduced avoidance behavior in Avoiders. Collectively, these findings suggest that elucidation of the mechanisms by which CRFR1-gated CeA circuits regulate avoidance behavior and alcohol SA may lead to better understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying co-morbid PTSD and AUD.
  • 5-aminolevulinic acid inhibits oxidative stress and ameliorates
           autistic-like behaviors in prenatal valproic acid-exposed rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Kazuya Matsuo, Yasushi Yabuki, Kohji FukunagaAbstractAutism spectrum disorders (ASDs) constitute a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by social deficits, repetitive behaviors, and learning disability. Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction are associated with ASD brain pathology. Here, we used oxidative stress in prenatal valproic acid (VPA)-exposed rats as an ASD model. After maternal VPA exposure (600 mg/kg, p.o.) on embryonic day (E) 12.5, temporal analyses of oxidative stress in the brain using an anti-4-hydroxy-2-nonenal antibody revealed that oxidative stress was increased in the hippocampus after birth. This was accompanied by aberrant enzymatic activity in the mitochondrial electron transport chain and reduced adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels in the hippocampus. VPA-exposed rats exhibited impaired spatial reference and object recognition memory alongside impaired social behaviors and repetitive behaviors. ASD-like behaviors including learning and memory were rescued by chronic oral administration of 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA; 30 mg/kg/day) and intranasal administration of oxytocin (OXT; 12 μg/kg/day), a neuropeptide that improves social behavior in ASD patients. 5-ALA but not OXT treatment ameliorated oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in the hippocampus of VPA-exposed rats. Fewer parvalbumin-positive interneurons were observed in VPA-exposed rats. Both 5-ALA and OXT treatments augmented the number of parvalbumin-positive interneurons. Collectively, our results indicate that oral 5-ALA administration ameliorated oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction, suggesting that 5-ALA administration improves ASD-like neuropathology and behaviors via mechanisms different to those of OXT.
  • Adjunctive effect of the serotonin 5-HT2C receptor agonist lorcaserin on
           opioid-induced antinociception in mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Salvador Sierra, Kumiko M. Lippold, David L. Stevens, Justin L. Poklis, William L. Dewey, Javier González-MaesoAbstractOpioid-sparing adjuncts are treatments that aim to reduce the overall dose of opioids needed to achieve analgesia, hence decreasing the burden of side effects through alternative mechanisms of action. Lorcaserin is a serotonin 5-HT2C receptor (5-HT2CR) agonist that has recently been reported to reduce abuse-related effects of the opioid analgesic oxycodone. The goal of our studies was to evaluate the effects of adjunctive lorcaserin on opioid-induced analgesic-like behavior using the tail-flick reflex (TFR) test as a mouse model of acute thermal nociception. We show that whereas subcutaneous (s.c.) administration of lorcaserin alone was inactive on the TFR test, adjunctive lorcaserin (s.c.) significantly increased the potency of oxycodone as an antinociceptive drug. This effect was prevented by the 5-HT2CR antagonist SB242084. A similar lorcaserin (s.c.)-induced adjunctive phenotype was observed upon administration of the opioid analgesics morphine and fentanyl. Remarkably, we also show that, opposite to the effects observed via s.c. administration, intrathecal (i.t.) administration of lorcaserin alone induced antinociceptive TFR behavior, an effect that was not prevented by the opioid receptor antagonist naloxone. This route of administration (i.t.) also led to a significant augmentation of oxycodone-induced antinociception. Lorcaserin (s.c.) did not alter the brain or blood concentrations of oxycodone, which suggests that its adjunctive effects on opioid-induced antinociception do not depend upon changes in opioid metabolism. Together, these data indicate that lorcaserin-mediated activation of the 5-HT2CR may represent a new pharmacological approach to augment opioid-induced antinociception.
  • Adolescent Cannabis Exposure Increases Heroin Reinforcement In Rats
           Genetically Vulnerable To Addiction
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 22 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Daniele Lecca, Andrea Scifo, Augusta Pisanu, Valentina Valentini, Giovanna Piras, Annesha Sil, Cristina Cadoni, Gaetano Di ChiaraAbstractOn the basis of epidemiological studies it has been proposed that cannabis use plays a causal role in the abuse of highly addictive drugs (Gateway Hypothesis). However, epidemiological studies are intrinsically unable to provide evidence of causality. Experimental studies can provide this evidence but they are feasible only in animal models and to date such evidence is lacking. In view of the importance of genetic factors in drug abuse, we investigated the influence of adolescent cannabis exposure on adult heroin reinforcement in two inbred rat strains differentially vulnerable to drugs of abuse, addiction prone Lewis (LEW) and addiction resistant Fischer 344 (F344) strains.Male LEW and F344 rats aged six weeks were exposed to increasing Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) doses, twice a day for 3 days (2, 4, 8 mg/kg, i.p.). At adulthood they were allowed to self-administer heroin (0.025 mg/kg) under both Fixed- (FR) and Progressive- (PR) ratio schedules of responding. Following extinction, responding was reinstated by drug-cues and/or by heroin priming.THC pre-exposure increased responding for heroin and heroin intake under FR-3 and FR-5 as well as PR protocols and increased breaking point in PR schedules in LEW but not F344 rats. Drug cues and heroin priming reinstated responding in LEW and F344, but THC pre-exposure increased reinstatement by priming in LEW rats and by cues in F344 rats.These observations show that in genetically predisposed individuals, adolescent cannabis exposure increases heroin reinforcing properties, thus providing a mechanism for a causal role of adolescent cannabis use in heroin abuse.
  • Anxiogenesis induced by social defeat in male mice: Role of nitric oxide,
           NMDA, and CRF1 receptors in the medial prefrontal cortex and BNST
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): M.P. Faria, C.F. Laverde, R.L. Nunes-de-SouzaAbstractNitric oxide (NO) release in the right medial prefrontal cortex (RmPFC) produces anxiogenesis. In the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST), a region that receives neuronal projections from the mPFC, NO provokes anxiety, an effect that is blocked by local injections of corticotrophin-releasing factor type 1 receptor (CRF1) or n-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAr) antagonist. Anxiety is also enhanced by social defeat stress, and chronic stress impairs and facilitates, respectively, PFC and BNST roles in modulating behavioral responses to aversive situations. This study investigated whether the (i) chronic social defeat stress (CSDS) increases NO signaling in the mPFC; and/or (ii) anxiogenic effects provoked by the intra-RmPFC injection of NOC-9 (an NO donor) or by CSDS are prevented by intra-BNST injections of AP-7 (0.05 nmol) or CP 376395 (3.0 nmol), respectively, NMDAr and CRF1 antagonists, in male Swiss-Webster mice exposed to the elevated plus-maze (EPM). Results showed that (a) CSDS increased anxiety (i.e., reduced open-arm exploration) and repeatedly activated nNOS-containing neurons, as measured by ΔFosB (a stable nonspecific marker of neural activity) + nNOS double-labeling, in the right (but not left) mPFC, (b) NOC-9 in the RmPFC also increased anxiety, and (c) both CSDS and NOC-9 effects were reversed by injections of AP-7 or CP 376395 into the BNST. These results suggest that NMDA and CRF1 receptors located in BNST play an important role in the modulation of anxiety provoked by NO in the RmPFC, as well as by chronic social defeat in mice.
  • Personalized medicine in genetic epilepsies – possibilities,
           challenges, and new frontiers
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Ingo Helbig, Colin A. EllisAbstractIdentifying the optimal treatment based on specific characteristics of each patient is the main promise of precision medicine. In the field of epilepsy, the identification of more than 100 causative genes provides the enticing possibility of treatments targeted to specific disease etiologies. These conditions include classical examples, such as the use of vitamin B6 in antiquitin deficiency or the ketogenic diet in GLUT1 deficiency, where the disease mechanism can be directly addressed by the selection of a specific therapeutic compound. For epilepsies caused by channelopathies there have been advances in understanding how the selection of existing medications can be targeted to the functional consequences of genetic alterations. We discuss the examples of the use of sodium channel blockers such as phenytoin and oxcarbazepine in the sodium channelopathies, quinidine in KCNT1-related epilepsies, and strategies in GRIN-related epilepsies as examples of epilepsy precision medicine. Assessing the clinical response to targeted treatments of these conditions has been complicated by genetic and phenotypic heterogeneity, as well as by various neurological and non-neurological comorbidities. Moving forward, the development of standardized outcome measures will be critical to successful precision medicine trials in complex and heterogeneous disorders like the epilepsies. Finally, we address new frontiers in epilepsy precision medicine, including the need to match the growing volume of genetic data with high-throughput functional assays to assess the functional consequences of genetic variants and the ability to extract clinical data at large scale from electronic medical records and apply quantitative methods based on standardized phenotyping language.
  • Therapeutic potential of serotonin 4 receptor for chronic depression and
           its associated comorbidity in the gut
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 20 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Lokesh Agrawal, Mustafa Korkutata, Sunil Kumar Vimal, Manoj Kumar Yadav, Sanjib Bhattacharyya, Takashi ShigaAbstractThe latest estimates from world health organization suggest that more than 450 million people are suffering from depression and other psychiatric conditions. Of these, 50-60% have been reported to have progression of gut diseases. In the last two decades, researchers introduced incipient physiological roles for serotonin (5-HT) receptors (5-HTRs), suggesting their importance as a potential pharmacological target in various psychiatric and gut diseases. A growing body of evidence suggests that 5-HT systems affect the brain-gut axis in depressive patients, which leads to gut comorbidity. Recently, preclinical trials of 5-HT4R agonists and antagonists were promising as antipsychotic and prokinetic agents. In the current review, we address the possible pharmacological role and contribution of 5-HT4R in the pathophysiology of chronic depression and associated gut abnormalities. Physiologically, during depression episodes, centers of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system couple together with neuroendocrine systems to alter the function of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and enteric nervous system (ENS), which in turn leads to onset of gastrointestinal tract (GIT) disorders. Consecutively, the ENS governs a broad spectrum of physiological activities of gut, such as visceral pain and motility. During the stages of emotional stress, hyperactivity of the HPA axis alters the ENS response to physiological and noxious stimuli. Consecutively, stress-induced flare, swelling, hyperalgesia and altered reflexes in gut eventually lead to GIT disorders. In summary, the current review provides prospective information about the role and mechanism of 5-HT4R-based therapeutics for the treatment of depressive disorder and possible consequences for the gut via brain-gut axis interactions.
  • Modifying the progression of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease with deep
           brain stimulation
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Martin Jakobs, Darrin J. Lee, Andres M. LozanoAbstractAt times of an aging population and increasing prevalence of neurodegenerative disorders, effective medical treatments remain limited. Therefore, there is an urgent need for new therapies to treat Alzheimer's disease (AD). Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is thought to address the neuronal network dysfunction of this disorder and may offer new therapeutic options. Preliminary evidence suggests that DBS of the fornix may have effects on cognitive decline, brain glucose metabolism, hippocampal volume and cortical grey matter volume in certain patients with mild AD. Rodent studies have shown that increase of cholinergic neurotransmitters, hippocampal neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity and reduction of amyloid plaques are associated with DBS. Currently a large phase III study of fornix DBS is assessing efficacy in patients with mild AD aged 65 years and older. The Nucleus basalis of Meynert has also been explored in a phase I study in of mild to moderate AD and was tolerated well regardless of the lack of benefit. Being an established therapy for Parkinson's Disease (PD), DBS may exert some disease-modifying traits rather than being a purely symptomatic treatment. There is evidence of dopaminergic neuroprotection in animal models and some suggestion that DBS may influence the natural progression of the disorder. Neuromodulation may possibly have beneficial effects on course of different neurodegenerative disorders compared to medical therapy alone. For dementias, functional neurosurgery may provide an adjunctive option in patient care.
  • d -lysergic+acid+diethylamide+(LSD)&rft.title=Neuropharmacology&rft.issn=0028-3908&">Pharmacological and biotransformation studies of 1-acyl-substituted
           derivatives of d -lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD)
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 19 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Adam L. Halberstadt, Muhammad Chatha, Adam K. Klein, John D. McCorvy, Markus R. Meyer, Lea Wagmann, Alexander Stratford, Simon D. BrandtAbstractThe ergoline d-lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is one of the most potent psychedelic drugs. 1-Acetyl-LSD (ALD-52), a derivative of LSD containing an acetyl group on the indole nitrogen, also produces psychedelic effects in humans and has about the same potency as LSD. Recently, several other 1-acyl-substitued LSD derivatives, including 1-propanoyl-LSD (1P-LSD) and 1-butanoyl-LSD (1B-LSD), have appeared as designer drugs. Although these compounds are assumed to act as prodrugs for LSD, studies have not specifically tested this prediction. The present investigation was conducted to address the gap of information about the pharmacological effects and mechanism-of-action of 1-acyl-substituted LSD derivatives. Competitive binding studies and calcium mobilization assays were performed to assess the interaction of ALD-52, 1P-LSD, and 1B-LSD with serotonin 5-HT2 receptor subtypes. A receptorome screening was performed with 1B-LSD to assess its binding to other potential targets. Head twitch response (HTR) studies were performed in C57BL/6J mice to assess in vivo activation of 5-HT2A (the receptor thought to be primarily responsible for hallucinogenesis). Finally, liquid chromatography/ion-trap mass spectrometry (LC/MS) was used to quantify plasma levels of LSD in Sprague-Dawley rats treated with ALD-52 and 1P-LSD. 1-Acyl-substitution reduced the affinity of LSD for most monoamine receptors, including 5-HT2A sites, by one to two orders of magnitude. Although LSD acts as an agonist at 5-HT2 subtypes, ALD-52, 1P-LSD and 1B-LSD have weak efficacy or act as antagonists in Ca2+-mobilization assays. Despite the detrimental effect of 1-acyl substitution on 5-HT2A affinity and efficacy, 1-acyl-substitued LSD derivatives induce head twitches in mice with relatively high potency. High levels of LSD were detected in the plasma of rats after subcutaneous administration of ALD-52 and 1P-LSD, demonstrating these compounds are rapidly and efficiently deacylated in vivo. These findings are consistent with the prediction that ALD-52, 1P-LSD and 1B-LSD serve as prodrugs for LSD.
  • Constitutive activity of 5-HT receptors: Factual analysis
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Philippe De Deurwaerdère, Rahul Bharatiya, Abdeslam Chagraoui, Giuseppe Di GiovanniAbstractThe constitutive activity of different serotonin receptors (5-HTRs) toward intracellular signaling pathways has been proposed to have physiological and pathological importance. Inverse agonists block the constitutive activity and can be used to probe and silence such a spontaneous activity. The constitutive activity of 5-HTRs can be observed in various heterologous systems of expression in vitro (very high for 5-HT2CR; very low for 5-HT2AR). The demonstration of the existence of this activity in native tissues and ultimately in integrative neurobiology and behavior is a real pharmacological challenge. Irrespective of the existence of mutants or polymorphisms that could alter the constitutive activity of 5-HTRs, evidence suggests that spontaneous activity of 5-HT2CR could impact the activity of neurobiological networks and that of 5-HT6R and 5-HT7R the developmental morphogenesis. Some findings exist for 5-HT2BR and 5-HT2AR in diverse though rare conditions. The existence of a constitutive activity for 5-HT1AR, 5-HT1B/1DR, and 5-HT4R is still poorly supported. When identified, the constitutive activity may differ according to brain location, state of activity (phasic in nature), and intracellular signaling pathways. A very few studies have reported aberrant constitutive activity of 5-HTRs in animal models of human diseases and patients. The purpose of this review is a critical examination of the available neuropharmacological data on the constitutive activity of 5-HTRs to determine whether this activity is an essential component of the serotonergic system transmission and it may be a possible target for CNS drug development.
  • Monoacylglycerol lipase alpha inhibition alters prefrontal cortex
           excitability and blunts the consequences of traumatic stress in rat
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): N.B. Worley, J.A. Varela, G.P. Gaillardetz, M.N. Hill, J.P. ChristiansonAbstractNeural activity within the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) is a critical determinant of stressor-induced anxiety. Pharmacological activation of the vmPFC during stress protects against stress-induced social anxiety suggesting that altering the excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) tone in the vmPFC may promote stress resilience. E/I balance is maintained, in part, by endogenous cannabinoid (eCB) signaling with the calcium dependent retrograde release of 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) suppressing presynaptic neurotransmitter release. We hypothesized that raising 2-AG levels, via inhibition of its degradation enzyme monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) with KML29, would shift vmPFC E/I balance and promote resilience. In acute slice experiments, bath application of KML29 (100 nM) augmented evoked excitatory neurotransmission as evidenced by a left-shift in fEPSP I/O curve, and decreased sIPSC amplitude. In whole-cell recordings, KML29 increased resting membrane potential but reduced the after depolarization, bursting rate, membrane time constant and slow after hyperpolarization. Intra-vmPFC administration of KML29 (200ng/0.5μL/hemisphere) prior to inescapable stress (IS) exposure (25, 5s tail shocks) prevented stress induced anxiety as measured by juvenile social exploration 24 h after stressor exposure. Conversely, systemic administration of KML29 (40 mg/kg, i.p.) 2 h before IS exacerbated stress induced anxiety. MAGL inhibition in the vmPFC may promote resilience by augmenting the output of neurons that project to brainstem and limbic structures that mediate stress responses.
  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)-induced intracellular syndrome in mouse
           non-neural embryonic cells is associated with inhibited proliferation and
           cell death
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Olga Gordeeva, Vitaliy SafandeevAbstractBiogenic monoamines are involved in the regulation of various processes in both neural and non-neural cells during development. The present study aimed to identify the regulatory effects of serotonin (5-HT) and its precursors (l-tryptophan and 5-hydroxytryptophan, 5-HTP) on proliferation and cell death in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs and 3T3 cells). The concentration-dependent cell growth and viability of the ESCs, MEFs and 3T3 cells were analyzed after treatment with l-tryptophan, 5-HTP and 5-HT in the concentration range 10−6 - 10−2 M. Treating the cells with 5-HTP, but not l-tryptophan and 5-HT, induced reversible toxic effects. 5-HTP treatment (10−3 - 10−2 M) significantly inhibited cell proliferation through blocking of the S-phase of the cell cycle and increasing apoptotic and necrotic cell death. Moreover, 5-HTP treatment stimulated a reorganization of the actin and tubulin networks and upregulated the gene expression of enzymes involved in serotonin synthesis and metabolism: aromatic amino acid decarboxylase (Aadc/Ddc), monoamine oxidase A (Maoa), and transglutaminase 2 (Tgm2). HPLC analysis found no changes in the intracellular and extracellular levels of serotonin after 5-HTP treatment, but a significant increase of intracellular 5-HTP levels. However, inhibition of AADC with NSD-1015 or transglutaminase with cystamine prevented 5-HTP-induced cell growth impairment and attenuated the toxic effects of 5-HTP treatment. Our results suggest that 5-HTP can induce toxic effects through cell cycle arrest and cell death in embryonic stem and somatic cells by enhancing the levels of serotonin-mediated protein modifications.
  • Mechanisms of Action of Currently Used Antiseizure Drugs
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Graeme J. Sills, Michael A. RogawskiAbstractAntiseizure drugs (ASDs) prevent the occurrence of seizures; there is no evidence that they have disease-modifying properties. In the more than 160 years that orally administered ASDs have been available for epilepsy therapy, most agents entering clinical practice were either discovered serendipitously or with the use of animal seizure models. The ASDs originating from these approaches act on brain excitability mechanisms to interfere with the generation and spread of epileptic hyperexcitability, but they do not address the specific defects that are pathogenic in the epilepsies for which they are prescribed, which in most cases are not well understood. There are four broad classes of such ASD mechanisms: (1) modulation of voltage-gated sodium channels (e.g. phenytoin, carbamazepine, lamotrigine), voltage-gated calcium channels (e.g. ethosuximide), and voltage-gated potassium channels [e.g. retigabine (ezogabine)]; (2) enhancement of GABA-mediated inhibitory neurotransmission (e.g. benzodiazepines, tiagabine, vigabatrin); (3) attenuation of glutamate-mediated excitatory neurotransmission (e.g. perampanel); and (4) modulation of neurotransmitter release via a presynaptic action (e.g. levetiracetam, brivaracetam, gabapentin, pregabalin). In the past two decades there has been great progress in identifying the pathophysiological mechanisms of many genetic epilepsies. Given this new understanding, attempts are being made to engineer specific small molecule, antisense and gene therapies that functionally reverse or structurally correct pathogenic defects in epilepsy syndromes. In the near future, these new therapies will begin a paradigm shift in the treatment of some rare genetic epilepsy syndromes, but targeted therapies will remain elusive for the vast majority of epilepsies until their causes are identified.
  • Endocannabinoid modulating drugs improve anxiety but not the expression of
           conditioned fear in a rodent model of post-traumatic stress disorder
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Akshayan Vimalanathan, Darryl C. Gidyk, Mustansir Diwan, Flavia V. Gouveia, Nir Lipsman, Peter Giacobbe, José N. Nobrega, Clement HamaniAbstractThe endocannabinoid (eCB) system is a potential target for the treatment of symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Similar to clinical PTSD, approximately 25-30% of rats that undergo cued fear conditioning exhibit impaired extinction learning. In addition to extinction-resistant fear, these “weak extinction” (WE) rats show persistent anxiety-like behaviors. The goal of the present study was to test the hypothesis that behavioural differences between WE animals and those presenting normal extinction patterns (strong extinction; SE) could be mediated by the eCB system. Rats undergoing fear conditioning/extinction and fear recall sessions were initially segregated in weak and strong-extinction groups. Two weeks later, animals underwent a fear recall session followed by a novelty-suppressed feeding (NSF) test. In acute experiments, WE rats were injected with either the fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor URB597 or the CB1 agonist WIN55,212-2 one hour prior to long-term recall and NSF testing. SE animals were injected with the inverse CB1 receptor agonist AM251. In chronic experiments, WE and SE rats were given daily injections of URB597 or AM251 between short and long-term recall sessions. We found that acute administration of WIN55,212-2 but not URB597 reduced anxiety-like behaviour in WE rats. In contrast, AM251 was anxiogenic in SE animals. Neither treatment was effective in altering freezing expression during fear recall. The chronic administration of AM251 to SE or URB597 to WE did not alter fear or anxiety-like behaviour or changed the expression of FAAH and CB1. Together, these results suggest that systemic manipulations of the eCB system may alter anxiety-like behaviour but not the behavioural expression of an extinction-resistant associative fear memory.
  • Cholinergic modulation inhibits cortical spreading depression in mouse
           neocortex through activation of muscarinic receptors and decreased
           excitatory/inhibitory drive
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 13 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Sarah Zerimech, Oana Chever, Paolo Scalmani, Lara Pizzamiglio, Fabrice Duprat, Massimo MantegazzaAbstractCortical spreading depression (CSD) is a wave of transient network hyperexcitability leading to long lasting depolarization and block of firing, which initiates focally and slowly propagates in the cerebral cortex. It causes migraine aura and it has been implicated in the generation of migraine headache. Cortical excitability can be modulated by cholinergic actions, leading in neocortical slices to the generation of rhythmic synchronous activities (UP/DOWN states).We investigated the effect of cholinergic activation with the cholinomimetic agonist carbachol on CSD triggered with 130 mM KCl pulse injections in acute mouse neocortical brain slices, hypothesizing that the cholinergic-induced increase of cortical network excitability during UP states could facilitate CSD. We observed instead an inhibitory effect of cholinergic activation on both initiation and propagation of CSD, through the action of muscarinic receptors. In fact, carbachol-induced CSD inhibition was blocked by atropine or by the preferential M1 muscarinic antagonist telenzepine; the preferential M1 muscarinic agonist McN-A-343 inhibited CSD similarly to carbachol, and its effect was blocked by telenzepine. Recordings of spontaneous excitatory and inhibitory post-synaptic currents in pyramidal neurons showed that McN-A-343 induced overall a decrease of the excitatory/inhibitory ratio. This inhibitory action may be targeted for novel pharmacological approaches in the treatment of migraine with muscarinic agonists.
  • The omega-3 lipid 17,18-EEQ sensitizes TRPV1 and TRPA1 in sensory neurons
           through the prostacyclin receptor (IP)
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 11 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Stephan M.G. Schäfer, Maksim Sendetski, Carlo Angioni, Rolf Nüsing, Gerd Geisslinger, Klaus Scholich, Marco SisignanoAbstractOxidized lipids play an important role in pain processing by modulation of the activity of sensory neurons. However, the role of many signalling lipids that do not belong to the classical group of eicosanoids, especially of oxidized omega-3 lipids in pain processing is unclear. Here we investigated the role of the endogenously produced omega-3 lipids 17,18-EEQ and 19,20-EDP in modulating the activity of sensory neurons. We found that 17,18-EEQ but not 19,20-EDP can sensitize the transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 and ankyrin 1 ion channels (TRPV1 and TRPA1) in sensory neurons, which depends on activation of a Gs-coupled receptor and PKA activation. Screening of different Gs-coupled lipid receptor-deficient mice, identified the prostacyclin receptor IP as putative receptor for 17,18-EEQ. Since 17,18-EEQ is synthesized by the Cytochrome-P450-Epoxygenase CYP2J2, we established a cellular mass spectrometry-based screening assay to identify substances that can suppress 17,18-EEQ concentrations. Using this assay, we identifiy the antidepressant venlafaxine and the antihypertensive drug telmisartan as potent inhibitors of CYP2J2-dependent 17,18-EEQ synthesis. These findings identify 17,18-EEQ as first omega-3-derived lipid mediator that acts via the IP receptor and sensitizes the TRPV1 channel in sensory neurons. Moreover, the results give a mechanistic explanation for the antinociceptive effects of venlafaxine, which are still not well understood. Like telmisartan, venlafaxine may reduce neuronal activity by blocking CYP2J2 and 17,18-EEQ synthesis and by inhibiting the IP receptor-PKA-TRPV1 axis in sensory neurons.
  • Effect of sertraline on central serotonin and hippocampal plasticity in
           pregnant and non-pregnant rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 11 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Jodi L. Pawluski, Rafaella Paravatou, Alan Even, Gael Cobraiville, Marianne Fillet, Nikolaos Kokras, Christina Dalla, Thierry D. CharlierAbstractOne of the most frequently prescribed selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor medications (SSRIs) for peripartum mood and anxiety disorders is sertraline (Zoloft®). Sertraline can help alleviate mood and anxiety symptoms in many women but it is not known how sertraline, or SSRIs in general, affect the neurobiology of the brain particularly when pregnant. The aim of this study was to investigate how sertraline affects plasticity in the hippocampus, a brain area integral in depression and SSRI efficacy (particularly in males), during late pregnancy and whether these effects differ from the effects of sertraline in non-pregnant females. To do this pregnant and age-matched non-pregnant female Sprague-Dawley rats were used. For the last half of pregnancy (10 days), and at matched points in non-pregnant females, rats were given sertraline (2.5 mg/kg/day or 10 mg/kg/day) or vehicle (0 mg/kg/day). Brains were used to investigate effects on the serotonergic system in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex, and measures of neuroplasticity in the hippocampus. Results show that pregnant females have significantly higher serum levels of sertraline compared to non-pregnant females but that rates of serotonin turnover in the hippocampus and PFC are similar between pregnant and non-pregnant females. Sertraline increased synaptophysin density in the dentate gyrus and CA3 and was associated with a decrease in cell proliferation in dentate gyrus of non-pregnant, but not pregnant, females. During late pregnancy the hippocampus showed significant reductions in neurogenesis and increases in synaptophysin density. This research highlights the need to consider the unique effect of reproductive state on neuropharmacological effects of SSRIs.
  • Corrigendum to ‘Role of serotonin 4 receptor in the growth of
           hippocampal neurons during the embryonic development in mice’
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Lokesh Agrawal, Sunil Kumar Vimal, Takashi Shiga
  • Ketamine increases vmPFC activity: Effects of (R)- and (S)-stereoisomers
           and (2R,6R)-hydroxynorketamine metabolite
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Brendan D. Hare, Santosh Pothula, Ralph J. DiLeone, Ronald S. DumanAbstractKetamine, an NMDA receptor antagonist and fast acting antidepressant, produces a rapid burst of glutamate in the ventral medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Preclinical studies have demonstrated that pyramidal cell activity in the vmPFC is necessary for the rapid antidepressant response to ketamine in rodents. We sought to characterize the effects of ketamine and its stereoisomers (R and S), as well as a metabolite, (2R,6R)-hydroxynorketamine (HNK), on vmPFC activity using a genetically encoded calcium indicator (GCaMP6f). Ratiometric fiber photometry was utilized to monitor GCaMP6f fluorescence in pyramidal cells of mouse vmPFC prior to and immediately following administration of compounds. GCaMP6f signal was assessed to determine correspondance of activity between compounds. We observed dose dependent effects with (R,S)-ketamine (3–100 mg/kg), with the greatest effects on GCaMP6f activity at 30 mg/kg and lasting up to 20 min. (S)-ketamine (15 mg/kg), which has high affinity for the NMDA receptor channel produced similar effects to (R,S)-ketamine, but compounds with low NMDA receptor affinity, including (R)-ketamine (15 mg/kg) and (2R,6R)-HNK (30 mg/kg) had little or no effect on GCaMP6f activity. The initial response to administration of (R,S)-ketamine as well as (S)-ketamine is characterized by a brief period of robust GCaMP6f activation, consistent with increased activity of vmPFC pyramidal neurons. Because (2R,6R)-HNK and (R)-ketamine are reported to have antidepressant activity in rodent models the current results indicate that different initiating mechanisms could to lead to similar brain adaptive consequences that underlie the rapid antidepressant responses.
  • Activation of EphB2 in the basolateral amygdala promotes stress
           vulnerability of mice by increasing NMDA-dependent synaptic function
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 9 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Jie-Ting Zhang, Yang Liu, Liang-Xia Li, Kuan Li, Jian-Guo Chen, Fang WangThe occurrence of major depressive disorder (MDD) has been linked to an increased vulnerability to stress. The basolateral amygdala (BLA) is one of the critical brain areas that involved in the regulation of pathological reactivity to stress. Increasing evidence indicates that the EphB2 receptor (EphB2) plays a critical role in neuropsychiatric disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, pain and anxiety. However, whether the EphB2 in the BLA is involved in stress vulnerability is unclear. Here, we identified EphB2 in the BLA as a key regulator contributed to the modulation of stress vulnerability in adult mice. We found that the expression of EphB2 in the BLA was significantly increased in the animal model induced by chronic social stress. Knockdown of EphB2 in the BLA produced antidepressant-like behavioral effects, whereas activation of EphB2 in the BLA increased the susceptibility to subthreshold social defeat stress. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the role of EphB2 in the stress vulnerability was mediated by modulating NMDA receptors, since the knockdown of EphB2 in the BLA prevented not only the increase in the amplitudes of both the miniature and the evoked NMDAR-mediated EPSC, but also the enhancement of surface expression of NMDARs in the defeated mice. Taken together, these results suggest that EphB2 in the BLA is a critical factor contributes to the vulnerability to stress, which may be a potential target for the treatment of depression.Graphical abstractImage 1
  • Approaches to develop therapeutics to treat Frontotemporal Dementia
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Lisa P. Elia, Terry Reisine, Amela Alijagic, Steven FinkbeinerAbstractFrontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a complex disease presenting as a spectrum of clinical disorders with progressive degeneration of frontal and temporal brain cortices and extensive neuroinflammation that result in personality and behavior changes, and eventually, death. There are currently no effective therapies for FTD. While 60-70% of FTD patients are sporadic cases, the other 30-40% are heritable (familial) cases linked to mutations in several known genes. We focus here on FTD caused by mutations in the GRN gene, which encodes a secreted protein, progranulin (PGRN), that has diverse roles in regulating cell survival, immune responses, and autophagy and lysosome function in the brain. FTD-linked mutations in GRN reduce brain PGRN levels that lead to autophagy and lysosome dysfunction, TDP43 accumulation, excessive microglial activation, astrogliosis, and neuron death through still poorly understood mechanisms. PGRN insufficiency has also been linked to Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and so the development of therapeutics for GRN-linked FTD that restore PGRN levels and function may have broader application for other neurodegenerative diseases. This review focuses on a strategy to increase PGRN to functional, healthy levels in the brain by identifying novel genetic and chemical modulators of neuronal PGRN levels.
  • Corrigendum to “All-trans retinoic acid prevents epidural fibrosis
           through NF-kB signaling pathway in post-laminectomy rats”
           [Neuropharmacology 79 (2014) 275–281]
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 8 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Chao Zhang, Xiaohong Kong, Guangzhi Ning, Zhipin Liang, Tongjun Qu, Feiran Chen, Daigui Cao, Tianyi Wang, Hari S. Sharma, Shiqing Feng
  • Attenuated dopamine receptor signaling in nucleus accumbens core in a rat
           model of chemically-induced neuropathy
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Dana E. Selley, Matthew F. Lazenka, Laura J. Sim-Selley, Julie R. Secor McVoy, David N. Potter, Elena H. Chartoff, William A. Carlezon, S. Stevens NegusAbstractNeuropathy is major source of chronic pain that can be caused by mechanically or chemically induced nerve injury. Intraplantar formalin injection produces local necrosis over a two-week period and has been used to model neuropathy in rats. To determine whether neuropathy alters dopamine (DA) receptor responsiveness in mesolimbic brain regions, we examined dopamine D1-like and D2-like receptor (D1/2R) signaling and expression in male rats 14 days after bilateral intraplantar formalin injections into both rear paws. D2R-mediated G-protein activation and expression of the D2R long, but not short, isoform were reduced in nucleus accumbens (NAc) core, but not in NAc shell, caudate-putamen or ventral tegmental area of formalin-compared to saline-treated rats. In addition, D1R-stimulated adenylyl cyclase activity was also reduced in NAc core, but not in NAc shell or prefrontal cortex, of formalin-treated rats, whereas D1R expression was unaffected. Other proteins involved in dopamine neurotransmission, including dopamine uptake transporter and tyrosine hydroxylase, were unaffected by formalin treatment. In behavioral tests, the potency of a D2R agonist to suppress intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS) was decreased in formalin-treated rats, whereas D1R agonist effects were not altered. The combination of reduced D2R expression and signaling in NAc core with reduced suppression of ICSS responding by a D2R agonist suggest a reduction in D2 autoreceptor function. Altogether, these results indicate that intraplantar formalin produces attenuation of highly specific DA receptor signaling processes in NAc core of male rats and suggest the development of a neuropathy-induced allostatic state in both pre- and post-synaptic DA receptor function.
  • Correlation between the potency of hallucinogens in the mouse head-twitch
           response assay and their behavioral and subjective effects in other
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 7 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Adam L. Halberstadt, Muhammad Chatha, Adam K. Klein, Jason Wallach, Simon D. BrandtAbstractSerotonergic hallucinogens such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) induce head twitches in rodents via 5-HT2A receptor activation. The goal of the present investigation was to determine whether a correlation exists between the potency of hallucinogens in the mouse head-twitch response (HTR) paradigm and their reported potencies in other species, specifically rats and humans. Dose-response experiments were conducted with phenylalkylamine and tryptamine hallucinogens in C57BL/6J mice, enlarging the available pool of HTR potency data to 40 total compounds. For agents where human data are available (n = 36), a strong positive correlation (r = 0.9448) was found between HTR potencies in mice and reported hallucinogenic potencies in humans. HTR potencies were also found to be correlated with published drug discrimination ED50 values for substitution in rats trained with either LSD (r = 0.9484, n = 16) or 2,5-dimethoxy-4-methylamphetamine (r = 0.9564, n = 21). All three of these behavioral effects (HTR in mice, hallucinogen discriminative stimulus effects in rats, and psychedelic effects in humans) have been linked to 5-HT2A receptor activation. We present evidence that hallucinogens induce these three effects with remarkably consistent potencies. In addition to having high construct validity, the HTR assay also appears to show significant predictive validity, confirming its translational relevance for predicting subjective potency of hallucinogens in humans. These findings support the use of the HTR paradigm as a preclinical model of hallucinogen psychopharmacology and in structure-activity relationship studies of hallucinogens. Future investigations with a larger number of test agents will evaluate whether the HTR assay can be used to predict the hallucinogenic potency of 5-HT2A agonists in humans.
  • Pharmacological MRI to investigate the functional selectivity of 5-HT1A
           receptor biased agonists
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 26 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Benjamin Vidal, Radu Bolbos, Jérôme Redouté, Jean-Baptiste Langlois, Nicolas Costes, Adrian Newman-Tancredi, Luc ZimmerAbstractThe emerging concept of “biased agonism” denotes the phenomenon whereby agonists can preferentially direct receptor signalling to specific intracellular responses among the different transduction pathways, thus potentially avoiding side effects and improving therapeutic effects. The aim of this study was to investigate biased agonism by using pharmacological magnetic resonance imaging (phMRI). The cerebral blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) signal changes induced by increasing doses of two serotonin 5-HT1A receptor biased agonists, NLX-112 and NLX-101, were mapped in anaesthetized rats. Although both compounds display high affinity, selectivity and agonist efficacy for 5-HT1A receptors, NLX-101 is known to preferentially activate post-synaptic receptors, whereas NLX-112 targets both pre- and post-synaptic receptors. We used several doses of agonists in order to determine if the regional selectivity of NLX-101 was dose-dependent. NLX-112 and NLX-101 induced different positive and negative hemodynamic changes patterns at equal doses. Importantly, NLX-101 had no significant effect in regions expressing pre-synaptic receptors contrary to NLX-112. NLX-112 also produced higher BOLD changes than NLX-101 in the orbital cortex, the somatosensory cortex, and the magnocellular preoptic nuclei. In other regions such as the retrosplenial cortex and the dorsal thalamus, the drugs had similar effects. In terms of functional connectivity, NLX-112 induced more widespread changes than NLX-101. The present phMRI study demonstrates that two closely-related agonists display notable differences in their hemodynamic “fingerprints”. These data support the concept of biased agonism at 5-HT1A receptors and raise the prospect of identifying novel therapeutics which exhibit improved targeting of brain regions implicated in neuropsychiatric disorders.
  • Murine model of OPRM1 A118G alters oxycodone self-administration and
           locomotor activation, but not conditioned place preference
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 25 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Devon Collins, Yong Zhang, Julie Blendy, Mary Jeanne KreekAbstractMu-opioid receptors (MORs) mediate the rewarding properties of oxycodone and other prescription opioid medications, which have played a central role in the current opioid epidemic in the United States. The human mu-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1) contains a functional single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), A118G, which has been associated with altered opioid addiction risk, however the mechanisms responsible for this are not well understood. To explore this, we examined oxycodone conditioned place preference (CPP) and self-administration behavior (SA) in A112G mice, which possess a functionally analogous SNP in the mouse mu-opioid receptor gene (Oprm1). For CPP, male and female A112G mice homozygous for the A112 (wild-type; AA) or G112 (GG) allele were conditioned with doses of 1 and 3 mg/kg across an 8-day period. For SA, mice were allowed to self administer oxycodone (unit dose 0.25 mg/kg/infusion, FR1) for 4h/day for 10 consecutive days. We observed no effects of genotype or sex on conditioned place preference behavior. Oxycodone 3 mg/kg increased locomotor activity in AA mice but not GG mice, and both male and female GG mice self-administered significantly more oxycodone compared to their wild-type AA littermates. These studies suggest that the G allele promotes greater opioid intake, which may underlie greater opioid addiction morbidity in G-allele carriers.
  • Ketamine inhibits synaptic transmission and nicotinic acetylcholine
           receptor-mediated responses in rat intracardiac ganglia in situ
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 3 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Alexander A. Harper, Katrina Rimmer, Jhansi Dyavanapalli, Jeffrey R. McArthur, David J. AdamsAbstractThe intravenous anaesthetic ketamine, has been demonstrated to inhibit nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR)-mediated currents in dissociated rat intracardiac ganglion (ICG) neurons (Weber et al., 2005). This effect would be predicted to depress synaptic transmission in the ICG and would account for the inhibitory action of ketamine on vagal transmission to the heart (Inoue and König, 1984). This investigation was designed to examine the activity of ketamine on (i) postsynaptic responses to vagal nerve stimulation, (ii) the membrane potential, and (iii) membrane current responses evoked by exogenous application of ACh and nicotine in ICG neurons in situ. Intracellular recordings were made using sharp intracellular microelectrodes in a whole mount ICG preparation. Preganglionic nerve stimulation and recordings in current- and voltage-clamp modes were used to assess the action of ketamine on ganglionic transmission and nAChR-mediated responses. Ketamine attenuated the postsynaptic responses evoked by nerve stimulation. This reduction was significant at clinically relevant concentrations at high frequencies. The excitatory membrane potential and current responses to focal application of ACh and nicotine were inhibited in a concentration-dependent manner by ketamine. In contrast, ketamine had no effect on the directly-evoked action potential or excitatory responses evoked by focal application of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Taken together, ketamine inhibits synaptic transmission and nicotine- and ACh-evoked currents in adult rat ICG. Ketamine inhibition of synaptic transmission and nAChR-mediated responses in the ICG contributes significantly to its attenuation of the bradycardia observed in response to vagal stimulation in the mammalian heart.
  • Effects of single-dose antipurinergic therapy on behavioral and molecular
           alterations in the valproic acid-induced animal model of autism
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 2 January 2020Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Mauro Mozael Hirsch, Iohanna Deckmann, Júlio Santos-Terra, Gabriela Zanotto Staevie, Mellanie Fontes-Dutra, Giovanna Carello-Collar, Marília Körbes-Rockenbach, Gustavo Brum Schwingel, Guilherme Bauer-Negrini, Bruna Rabelo, Maria C.B. Gonçalves, Juliana Corrêa-Velloso, Yahaira Naaldijk, Ana R. Castillo, Tomasz Schneider, Victorio Bambini-Junior, Henning Ulrich, Carmem GottfriedAbstractAutism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by deficits in communication and social interaction, restricted interests, and stereotyped behavior. Environmental factors, such as prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA), may contribute to the increased risk of ASD. Since disturbed functioning of the purinergic system has been associated with the onset of ASD and used as a potential therapeutic target for ASD in both clinical and preclinical studies, we analyzed the effects of suramin, a non-selective purinergic antagonist, on behavioral, molecular and immunological in an animal model of autism induced by prenatal exposure to VPA. Treatment with suramin (20 mg/kg, intraperitoneal) restored sociability in the three-chamber apparatus and decreased anxiety measured by elevated plus maze apparatus, but had no impact on decreased reciprocal social interactions or higher nociceptive threshold in VPA rats. Suramin treatment had no impact on VPA-induced upregulation of P2X4 and P2Y2 in hippocampus, and P2X4 in medial prefrontal cortex, but normalized an increased level of interleukin 6 (IL-6). Our results suggest an important role of purinergic modulation in behavioral, molecular, and immunological aberrations described in VPA model, and suggest that purinergic system might be a potential target for pharmacotherapy in preclinical studies of ASD.
  • Change in serotonergic modulation contributes to the synaptic imbalance of
           neuronal circuit at the prefrontal cortex in the 15q11-13 duplication
           mouse model of autism
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 31 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Fumihito Saitow, Toru Takumi, Hidenori SuzukiAbstractThe prefrontal cortex (PFC) has been extensively studied in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in an attempt to understand the deficits in executive and other higher brain functions related to sociability and emotion. Disruption of the excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) balance of cortical circuits is thought to underlie the pathophysiology of ASD. Recently, we showed that 15q dup mice (a model for ASD with human chromosome 15q11-13 paternal duplication) exhibit disruption of the E/I balance in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex due to a decrease in the number of inhibitory synapses. However, whether there is a pathological abnormality in E/I balance in the PFC of 15q dup mice remains unknown. In this study, we found that 15q dup facilitates the activity-induced LTP of glutamate synapses onto layer 5 pyramidal neurons by shifting the E/I balance to an excitatory state, which this was associated with differences in synaptic glutamatergic and GABAergic inputs onto GABAergic fast-spiking interneurons (FSINs). Furthermore, we found that FSIN excitability was well-modulated and regulated by the constitutive activation of 5-HT2 receptors in PFC microcircuits. These results provide new insights into the cellular mechanisms underlying maintenance of optimal E/I balance in the PFC.

  •        2-(5-(4-Chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazol-3-yl)-N-(2-hydroxyethyl)-2-oxoacetamide
           (CDMPO) has anti-inflammatory properties in microglial cells and prevents
           neuronal and behavioral deficits in MPTP mouse model of Parkinson's
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 27 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Byungwook Kim, Ju-Young Park, Duk-Yeon Cho, Hyun Myung Ko, Sung-Hwa Yoon, Dong-Kug ChoiAbstractParkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by the selective loss of nigrostriatal dopamine neurons associated with microglial activation. Inhibition of the inflammatory response elicited by activated microglia could be an effective strategy to alleviate the progression of PD. Here, we synthesized 2-(5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazol-3-yl)-N-(2-hydroxyethyl)-2-oxoacetamide (CDMPO) and studied its protective anti-inflammatory mechanisms following lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced neuroinflammation in vitro and 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced neurotoxicity in vivo. CDMPO and its parent compound, rimonabant, significantly attenuated nitric oxide (NO) production in LPS-stimulated primary microglia and BV2 cells. Furthermore, CDMPO significantly inhibited the release of proinflammatory cytokines and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) by activated BV2 cells, also suppressed expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). Mechanistically, CDMPO attenuated LPS-induced activation of nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), inhibitor of kappa B alpha (IκBα), and p38 phosphorylation in BV2 cells. MPTP intoxication of mice results in glial activation, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) depletion, and significant behavioral deficits. Prophylactic treatment with CDMPO decreased proinflammatory molecules via NF-κB and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling, resulting in protection of dopaminergic neurons and improved behavioral impairments. These results suggest that CDMPO is a promising neuroprotective agent for the prevention and treatment of microglia-mediated neuroinflammatory conditions and may be useful for behavioral improvement in PD phenotype.
  • Valproate reverses stress-induced somatic hyperalgesia and visceral
           hypersensitivity by up-regulating spinal 5-HT2C receptor expression in
           female rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 26 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Gang-Zhu Xu, Yang Xue, Si-Qi Wei, Jia-Heng Li, Richard J. Traub, Mao-De Wang, Dong-Yuan CaoAbstractSodium valproate (VPA) has analgesic effects in clinical and experimental studies, but the mechanisms are still unclear. The present study examined the effects of VPA on stress-induced somatic hyperalgesia and visceral hypersensitivity and the role of 5-HT2C receptors in the spinal cord. Repeated 3 day forced swim (FS) significantly reduced the thermal withdrawal latency and mechanical withdrawal threshold, and increased the magnitude of the visceromotor response to colorectal distention compared to the baseline values in rats. The somatic hyperalgesia and visceral hypersensitivity were accompanied by significant down-regulation of 5-HT2C receptor expression in the L4-L5 and L6-S1 dorsal spinal cord. Intraperitoneal administration of VPA (300 mg/kg) before each FS and 1 day post FS prevented the development of somatic hyperalgesia and visceral hypersensitivity induced by FS stress, as well as down-regulation of 5-HT2C receptors in the spinal cord. The reversal of somatic hyperalgesia and visceral hypersensitivity by VPA in FS rats was blocked by intrathecal administration of the selective 5-HT2C receptor antagonist RS-102221 (30 μg/10 μL) 30 min after each VPA injection. The results suggest that VPA attenuates FS-induced somatic hyperalgesia and visceral hypersensitivity by restoring down-regulated function of 5-HT2C receptors in the spinal cord.
  • Regulation of aggressive behaviors by nicotinic acetylcholine receptors:
           animal models, human genetics, and clinical studies
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 26 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Alan S. Lewis, Marina R. PicciottoAbstractNeuropsychiatric disorders are frequently complicated by aggressive behaviors. For some individuals, existing behavioral and psychopharmacological treatments are ineffective or confer significant side effects, necessitating development of new ways to treat patients with severe aggression. Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are a large and diverse family of ligand-gated ion channels expressed throughout the brain that influence behaviors highly relevant for neuropsychiatric disorders, including attention, mood, and impulsivity. Nicotine and other drugs targeting nAChRs can reduce aggression in animal models of offensive, defensive, and predatory aggression, as well as in human laboratory studies. Human genetic studies have suggested a relationship between the CHRNA7 gene encoding the alpha-7 nAChR and aggressive behavior, although these effects are heterogeneous and strongly influenced by genetic background and environment. Here we review animal, human genetic, and clinical studies supporting a consistent role of nicotine and nAChR signaling in modulation of aggressive behaviors. We integrate findings from recent studies of aggression neuroscience, discuss the circuitry that may be involved in these effects of nAChRs, and identify multiple key questions that must be answered prior to safe and effective translation for human patients.
  • α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors intrinsically influence
           body weight in mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Ghazaul Dezfuli, Thao T. Olson, Lukas M. Martin, Youngshin Keum, Byron A. Siegars, Anushka Desai, Mia Uitz, Niaz Sahibzada, Richard A. Gillis, Kenneth J. KellarAbstractDesensitization of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) containing the β2 subunit is a potentially critical mechanism underlying the body weight (BW) reducing effects of nicotine. The purpose of this study was a) to determine the α subunit(s) that partners with the β2 subunit to form the nAChR subtype that endogenously regulates energy balance and b) to probe the extent to which nAChR desensitization is involved in the regulation of BW. We demonstrate that deletion of either the α4 or the β2, but not the α5, subunit of the nAChR suppresses weight gain in a sex-dependent manner. Furthermore, chronic treatment with the β2-selective nAChR competitive antagonist dihydro-β-erythroidine (DHβE) in mice fed a high-fat diet suppresses weight gain. These results indicate that heteromeric α4β2 nAChRs play a role as intrinsic regulators of energy balance and that desensitizing or inhibiting this nAChR is likely a relevant mechanism and thus could be a strategy for weight loss.
  • Corticosterone in the ventral hippocampus differentially alters accumbal
           dopamine output in drug-naïve and amphetamine-withdrawn rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 24 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Brenna Bray, Kaci A. Clement, Dana Bachmeier, Matthew A. Weber, Gina L. ForsterAbstractDysregulation in glucocorticoid stress and accumbal dopamine reward systems can alter reward salience to increase motivational drive in control conditions while contributing to relapse during drug withdrawal. Amphetamine withdrawal is associated with dysphoria and stress hypersensitivity that may be mediated, in part, by enhanced stress-induced corticosterone observed in the ventral hippocampus. Electrical stimulation of the ventral hippocampus enhances accumbal shell dopamine release, establishing a functional connection between these two regions. However, the effects of ventral hippocampal corticosterone on this system are unknown. To address this, a stress-relevant concentration of corticosterone (0.24ng/0.5 μL) or vehicle were infused into the ventral hippocampus of urethane-anesthetized adult male rats in control and amphetamine withdrawn conditions. Accumbal dopamine output was assessed with in vivo chronoamperometry. Corticosterone infused into the ventral hippocampus rapidly enhanced accumbal dopamine output in control conditions, but produced a biphasic reduction of accumbal dopamine output in amphetamine withdrawal. Selectively blocking glucocorticoid-, mineralocorticoid-, or cytosolic receptors prevented the effects of corticosterone. Overall, these results suggest that the ability of corticosterone to alter accumbal dopamine output requires cooperative activation of mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid receptors in the cytosol, which is dysregulated during amphetamine withdrawal. These findings implicate ventral hippocampal corticosterone in playing an important role in driving neural systems involved in positive stress coping mechanisms in healthy conditions, whereas dysregulation of this system may contribute to relapse during withdrawal.
  • A novel biscoumarin compound ameliorates cerebral ischemia
           reperfusion-induced mitochondrial oxidative injury via Nrf2/Keap-1/ARE
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Jun Wang, Wentong Zhang, Chao Lv, Yangang Wang, Bo Ma, Haomeng Zhang, Zhaoyang Fan, Mingkai Li, Xia LiAbstractSome phytochemical-derived synthetic compounds have been shown to improve neurological disorders, especially in ischemic stroke. In this study, we identified a novel biscoumarin compound, known as COM 3, which had substantial antioxidant effects in neurons. Next, we found that COM 3 occupies a critical binding site between the Nrf2 and Keap1 dipolymer, impairing the inhibitory effects of Keap1 on Nrf2, both of which play central roles in increasing endogenous antioxidant activity. We verified that COM 3 could increase the survival of neurons experiencing oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD) from 51.1% to 77.2% when exposure to 2.5 and 10 μg/mL of COM 3, respectively. In addition, the same concentrations of COM 3 could reduce brain infarct volumes by 33.8%–13.7%, respectively, while also reducing the neurobehavioral score from 3.3 to 1.4 on average in mice with a middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). COM 3 reduced neuronal death from 36.5% to 13.9% and apoptosis from 35.1% to 18.2%. In addition, COM 3 could improve the neuronal mitochondrial energy metabolism after experiencing oxidative stress caused by OGD or MCAO. The present study suggests that COM 3 protects against OGD in neurons and MCAO in mice by interfering with the structure of Keap1 to activate the nuclear transcription of Nrf2, which balances endogenous redox activity and restores mitochondrial function. Hence, COM 3 might be a potential therapeutic agent for ischemic stroke in the clinic.
  • Anti-neuroinflammatory, protective effects of the synthetic
           microneurotrophin BNN-20 in the advanced dopaminergic neurodegeneration of
           “weaver” mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Vasiliki Panagiotakopoulou, Konstantinos Botsakis, Foteini Delis, Theodora Mourtzi, Manolis N. Tzatzarakis, Aggeliki Dimopoulou, Nafsika Poulia, Katerina Antoniou, Georgios T. Stathopoulos, Nikolaos Matsokis, Ioannis Charalampopoulos, Achilleas Gravanis, Fevronia AngelatouBNN-20 is a synthetic microneurotrophin, long-term administration (P1–P21) of which exerts potent neuroprotective effect on the “weaver” mouse, a genetic model of progressive, nigrostriatal dopaminergic degeneration. The present study complements and expands our previous work, providing evidence that BNN-20 fully protects the dopaminergic neurons even when administration begins at a late stage of dopaminergic degeneration (>40%).Since neuroinflammation plays a critical role in Parkinson's disease, we investigated the possible anti-neuroinflammatory mechanisms underlying the pharmacological action of BNN-20. The latter was shown to be microglia-mediated, at least in part. Indeed, BNN-20 induced a partial, but significant, reversal of microglia hyperactivation, observed in the untreated “weaver” mouse. Furthermore, it induced a shift in microglia polarization towards the neuroprotective M2 phenotype, suggesting a possible beneficial shifting of microglia activity. This observation was further supported by morphometric measurements.Furthermore, BDNF levels, which were severely reduced in the “weaver” mouse midbrain, were restored to normal even after short-term BNN-20 administration. Experiments in “weaver”/NGL (dual GFP/luciferase-NF-κВ reporter) mice using bioluminescence after a short BNN-20 treatment (P60–P74), have shown that the increase of BDNF production was specifically mediated through the TrkB-PI3K-Akt-NF-κB signaling pathway.Interestingly, long-term BNN-20 treatment (P14–P60) significantly increased dopamine levels in the “weaver” striatum, which seems to be associated with the improved motor activity observed in the treated mutant animals.In conclusion, our findings suggest that BNN-20 may serve as a lead molecule for new therapeutic compounds for Parkinson's disease, combining strong anti-neuroinflammatory and neuroprotective properties, leading to elevated dopamine levels and improved motor activity.Graphical abstractImage 1
  • Role of AMPK/SIRT1-SIRT3 signaling pathway in affective disorders in
           unpredictable chronic mild stress mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Xuefeng Yu, Ying Hu, Wenkai Huang, Nuo Ye, Qizhi Yan, Wenjuan Ni, Xi JiangAbstractObjectivesTo explore the role of 5′ adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase/sirtuin1-sirtuin3 (AMPK/SIRT1-SIRT3) signaling pathway in behavioral and neuroinflammation/oxidative stress alterations in unpredictable chronic mild stress (UCMS) model mice.MethodsMale ICR mice weighing 20–22 g were used in this study. Behavior performance was evaluated from the 14th day of drug treatment. Expression levels of AMPK, SIRT1, SIRT3, and NF-κBp65 were tested by immuno-blot analysis. Contents of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α), interleukin 1β (IL-1β) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) were detected by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Reactive oxygen species (ROS), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione (GSH) expressions were tested by neurochemical and biochemical assays.ResultsBehavioral disorders and decreases of AMPK, SIRT1 and SIRT3 induced by UCMS were all reversed by AICA Riboside (AICAR) treatment. These effects were correlated with alterations of oxidative stress (ROS, GSH, SOD) and inflammation (pNF-κBp65, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6) status. Co-treatment with SIRT3 inhibitor (3-TYP) in addition to AICAR abolished AICAR's effects on behavior and expression level of inflammation/oxidative stress-related factors of mice, without affecting the content of SIRT1. Contrarily, combining use of AICAR and SIRT1 inhibitor (Sirtinol or EX-527) increased SIRT3 level, which led to better alleviation of behavioral disorders, compared with single AICAR treatment. Interestingly, in normal or UCMS mice, up or down regulation of SIRT1 did not affect SIRT3 level.ConclusionProvided that AMPK is activated, SIRT1 inhibition could induce the increase of SIRT3, and SIRT3 exerts more beneficial function in alleviation of consequences of chronic stress than SIRT1.
  • Hyperactive Akt-mTOR pathway as a therapeutic target for pain
           hypersensitivity in Cntnap2-deficient mice
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Xiaoliang Xing, Kunyang Wu, Yufan Dong, Yimei Zhou, Jing Zhang, Fang Jiang, Wang-Ping Hu, Jia-Da LiAbstractContactin-associated protein-like 2 (CNTNAP2 or CASPR2) is a neuronal transmembrane protein of the neurexin superfamily that is involved in many neurological diseases, such as autism and pain hypersensitivity. We recently found that Cntnap2−/− mice showed elevated Akt-mTOR activity in the brain, and suppression of the Akt-mTOR pathway rescued the social deficit in Cntnap2−/− mice. In this study, we found that the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) from Cntnap2−/− mice also showed hyperactive Akt-mTOR signaling. Treatment with the Akt inhibitor LY94002 or the mTOR inhibitor rapamycin attenuated pain-related hypersensitivity to noxious mechanical stimuli, heat, and inflammatory substances. Further, suppression of mTOR signaling by rapamycin decreased DRG neuronal hyperexcitability. We further indicated that treatment with the FDA-approved drug metformin normalized the hyperactive Akt-mTOR signaling, and attenuated pain-related hypersensitivity in Cntnap2−/− mice. Our results thus identified hyperactive Akt-mTOR signaling pathway as a promising therapeutic target for pain-related hypersensitivity in patients with dysfunction of CNTNAP2.
  • Activation of adenosine A2A receptors in the olfactory tubercle
           promotes sleep in rodents
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Rui Li, Yi-Qun Wang, Wen-Ying Liu, Meng-Qi Zhang, Lei Li, Yoan Cherasse, Serge N. Schiffmann, Alban de Kerchove d’Exaerde, Michael Lazarus, Wei-Min Qu, Zhi-Li HuangAbstractThe olfactory tubercle (OT), an important nucleus in processing sensory information, has been reported to change cortical activity under odor. However, little is known about the physiological role and mechanism of the OT in sleep-wake regulation. The OT expresses abundant adenosine A2A receptors (A2ARs), which are important in sleep regulation. Therefore, we hypothesized that the OT regulates sleep via A2ARs. This study examined sleep-wake profiles through electroencephalography and electromyography recordings with pharmacological and chemogenetic manipulations in freely moving rodents. Compared with their controls, activation of OT A2ARs pharmacologically and OT A2AR neurons via chemogenetics increased non-rapid eye movement sleep for 3 and 5 h, respectively, while blockade of A2ARs decreased non-rapid eye movement sleep. Tracing and electrophysiological studies showed OT A2AR neurons projected to the ventral pallidum and lateral hypothalamus, forming inhibitory innervations. Together, these findings indicate that A2ARs in the OT play an important role in sleep regulation.
  • Differential effects of HDAC inhibitors on PPN oscillatory activity in
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 23 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Veronica Bisagno, Maria Alejandra Bernardi, Sara Sanz Blanco, Francisco J. Urbano, Edgar Garcia-RillThe pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN) has long been known to be part of the reticular activating system (RAS) in charge of arousal and REM sleep. We previously showed that in vitro exposure to a HDAC Class I and II mixed inhibitor (TSA), or a specific HDAC class IIa inhibitor (MC 1568), decreased PPN gamma oscillations. Given the lack of information on systemic in vivo treatments on neuronal synaptic properties, the present study was designed to investigate the systemic effect of HDAC inhibitors (HDACi) on PPN rhythmicity. Rat pups were injected (acute, single dose) with TSA (4 or 20 mg/Kg), MC1568 (4 or 20 mg/Kg), or MS275 (20 or 100 mg/kg). Our results show that MC1568 (20 mg/Kg) reduced mean frequency of PPN oscillations at gamma band, while increasing mean input resistance (Rm) of PPN neurons. For TSA (4 and 20 mg/kg), we observed reduced mean frequency of oscillations at gamma band and increased mean Rm of PPN neurons. Systemic administration of 20 mg/Kg MC1568 and TSA effects on Rm were washed out after 60 minutes of in vitro incubation of PPN slices, suggesting an underlying functional recovery of PPN calcium-mediated gamma band oscillations over time. In addition, at a lower dose, 4 mg/Kg, MC1568 and TSA induced higher mean amplitude gamma oscillations. Blocking HDAC class I might not have deleterious effects on gamma activity, but, more importantly, the inhibition of HDAC class I (at 100mg/kg) increased gamma band oscillations. In conclusion, the present results in vivo validate our previous findings in vitro and further expand information on the effects of HDAC inhibition on PPN rhythmicity. PPN neurons require normal activity of HDAC class IIa in order to oscillate at gamma band.Graphical abstractRed arrows represent statistical significant inhibition. Blue arrows represent statistical significant enhancement. ∼ Represents absence of change.Our findings suggest that gamma oscillations in the PPN are finely tuned in vivo by the activity of HDAC class IIa. Sustained blocking of HDAC IIa blunted gamma band oscillations of PPN neurons. Blocking HDAC class I showed higher gamma band amplitudes. In conclusion, systemic administration of HDAC inhibitors might have either negative or positive effects on PPN rhythmicity depending of dose and group of HDAC affected.Image 105643
  • Blockade of the dopaminergic neurotransmission with AMPT and reserpine
           induces a differential expression of genes of the dopaminergic phenotype
           in substantia nigra
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Sergio Ortiz-Padilla, Elier Soto-Orduño, Marisa Escobar Barrios, Abril Armenta Manjarrez, Yadira Bastián, J. Alfredo MendezAbstractDopaminergic neurons have the ability to release Dopamine from their axons as well as from their soma and dendrites. This somatodendritically-released Dopamine induces an autoinhibition of Dopaminergic neurons mediated by D2 autoreceptors, and the stimulation of neighbor GABAergic neurons mediated by D1 receptors (D1r). Here, our results suggest that the somatodendritic release of Dopamine in the substantia nigra (SN) may stimulate GABAergic neurons that project their axons into the hippocampus. Using semiquantitative multiplex RT-PCR we show that chronic blockade of the Dopaminergic neurotransmission with both AMPT and reserpine specifically decreases the expression levels of D1r, remarkably this may be the result of an antagonistic effect between AMPT and reserpine, as they induced the expression of a different set of genes when treated by separate. Furthermore, using anterograde and retrograde tracing techniques, we found that the GABAergic neurons that express D1r also project their axons in to the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Finally, we also found that the same treatment that decreases the expression levels of D1r in SN, also induces an impairment in the performance in an appetitive learning task that requires the coding of reward as well as navigational skills. Overall, our findings show the presence of a GABAergic interconnection between the SNr and the hippocampus mediated by D1r.
  • The kappa opioid receptor modulates GABA neuron excitability and synaptic
           transmission in midbrain-projections from the insular cortex
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 21 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Melanie M. Pina, Dipanwita Pati, Lara S. Hwa, Sarah Y. Wu, Alexandra A. Mahoney, Chiazam G. Omenyi, Montserrat Navarro, Thomas L. KashAbstractAs an integrative hub, the insular cortex (IC) translates external cues into interoceptive states that generate complex physiological, affective, and behavioral responses. However, the precise circuit and signaling mechanisms in the IC that modulate these processes are unknown. Here, we describe a midbrain-projecting microcircuit in the medial aspect of the agranular IC that signals through the Gαi/o-coupled kappa opioid receptor (KOR) and its endogenous ligand dynorphin (Dyn). Within this microcircuit, Dyn is robustly expressed in layer 2/3, while KOR is localized to deep layer 5, which sends a long-range projection to the substantia nigra (SN). Using ex vivo electrophysiology, we evaluated the functional impact of KOR signaling in layer 5 of the IC. We found that bath application of dynorphin decreased GABA release and increased glutamate release by IC-SN neurons, but did not alter their excitability. Conversely, dynorphin decreased the excitability of GABA neurons without altering synaptic transmission. Pretreatment with the KOR antagonist nor-BNI blocked the effects of dynorphin on IC-SN neurons and GABA neurons, indicating that the changes in synaptic transmission and excitability were selectively mediated through KOR. Selective inhibition of IC GABA neurons using a KOR-derived DREADD recapitulated these effects. This work provides insight into IC microcircuitry and indicates that Dyn/KOR signaling may act to directly reduce activity of layer 5 GABA neurons. In turn, KOR-driven inhibition of GABA promotes disinhibition of IC-SN neurons, which can modulate downstream circuits. Our findings present a potential mechanism whereby chronic upregulation of IC Dyn/KOR signaling can lead to altered subcortical function and downstream activity.
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 19 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Aranza Wille-Bille, Fabio Bellia, Ana María Jiménez García, Roberto Sebastián Miranda-Morales, Claudio D’Addario, Ricardo Marcos PautassiAbstractPrenatal ethanol exposure (PEE) promotes ethanol consumption in the adolescent offspring accompanied by the transcriptional regulation of kappa opioid receptor (KOR) system genes. This study analyzed if environmental enrichment (EE, from gestational day 20 to postnatal day 26) exerts protective effects upon PEE-modulation of gene expression, ethanol intake and anxiety responses. Pregnant rats were exposed to PEE (0.0 or 2.0 g/kg ethanol, gestational days 17-20) and subsequently the dam and offspring were reared under EE or standard conditions. PEE upregulated KOR mRNA levels in amygdala (AMY) and prodynorphin (PDYN) mRNA levels in ventral tegmental area (VTA) with the latter effect associated with lower DNA methylation at the gene promoter. These effects were normalized by exposure to EE. PEE modulated BDNF mRNA levels in VTA and Nucleus accumbens (AcbN), and EE mitigated the changes in AcbN. EE induced a protective effect on ethanol intake and preference, an effect more noticeable in males than in females, and in prenatal vehicle-treated (PV) than in PEE rats. The male offspring drank significantly less ethanol than the female offspring. The latter result suggests that the protective effect of EE on ethanol drinking may only emerge at lower levels of drinking. In the dams, PEE induced an upregulation of PDYN and KOR in AcbN. PDYN gene expression was normalized by exposure to EE. These results suggest that EE is a promising treatment to inhibit the effects of PEE. The results confirm that PEE effects are mediated by alterations in the transcriptional regulation of KOR system genes.
  • Lorcaserin bidirectionally regulates dopaminergic function
           site-dependently and disrupts dopamine brain area correlations in rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 17 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Philippe De Deurwaerdère, Marta Ramos, Rahul Bharatiya, Emilie Puginier, Abdeslam Chagraoui, Julien Manem, Eleonora Cuboni, Massimo Pierucci, Gabriele Deidda, Maurizio Casarrubea, Giuseppe Di GiovanniLorcaserin, which is a selective agonist of serotonin2C receptors (5-HT2CRs), is a new FDA-approved anti-obesity drug that has also shown therapeutic promise in other brain disorders, such as addiction and epilepsy. The modulation of dopaminergic function might be critical in the therapeutic effect of lorcaserin, but its exact effect is unknown. Here, we studied the effect of the peripheral administration of lorcaserin on the ventral tegmental area (VTA), the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) dopaminergic neural activity, dopamine (DA) dialysis levels in the nucleus accumbens and striatum and on DA tissue levels in 29 different rat brain regions. Lorcaserin (5–640 μg/kg, i.v.) moderately inhibited only a subpopulation of VTA DA neurons, but had no effect on the SNc neurons. Lorcaserin (0.3, 3 mg/kg, i.p.) did not change VTA and SNc DA population neural activity but slightly decreased the firing rate and burst firing of the spontaneously active VTA neurons, without altering DA extracellular dialysate levels in both the nucleus accumbens and the striatum. Quantitative analysis of DA and metabolites tissue contents of the 29 areas studied revealed that lorcaserin (0.3 or 3 mg/kg, i.p.) only affected a few brain regions, i.e., increased DA in the central amygdala, ventral hypothalamus and nucleus accumbens core and decreased it in the ventromedial striatum. On the other hand, lorcaserin dramatically changed the direction and reduced the number of correlations of DA tissue content among several brain areas. These effects on DA terminal networks might be significant in the therapeutic mechanism of lorcaserin.Graphical abstractImage 1
  • Treatment with gut bifidobacteria improves hippocampal plasticity and
           cognitive behavior in adult healthy rats
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 16 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): G. Talani, F. Biggio, M.C. Mostallino, V. Locci, C. Porcedda, L. Boi, E. Saolini, R. Piras, E. Sanna, G. BiggioAbstractAt the present time, gut microbiota inspires great interest in the field of neuroscience as a function of its role in normal physiology and involvement in brain function. This aspect suggests a specific gut-brain pathway, mainly modulated by gut microbiota activity. Among the multiple actions controlled by microbiota at the brain level, neuronal plasticity and cognitive function represent two of the most interesting aspects of this cross-talk communication. We address the possible action of two-months implementation of gut Bifidobacteria using a mixture of three different strains (B-MIX) on hippocampal plasticity and related cognitive behavior in adult healthy Sprague Dawley rats. B-MIX treatment increases the hippocampal BDNF with a parallel gain in dendritic spines’ density of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. Electrophysiological experiments revealed a significant increment of HFS-induced LTP formation on the CA1 hippocampal region in B-MIX treated rats. All these effects are accompanied by a better cognitive performance observed in B-MIX treated animals with no impairments in locomotion activity. Therefore, in adult rats, the treatment with different strains of bifidobacteria is able to markedly enhance neuronal plasticity and the CNS function influencing cognitive behavior, an effect that may suggest a potential therapeutic treatment in brain diseases associated with cognitive functions.
  • Astrocyte control of glutamatergic activity: Downstream effects on
           serotonergic function and emotional behavior
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 14 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Neus Fullana, Júlia Gasull-Camós, Mireia Tarrés-Gatius, Anna Castañé, Analía Bortolozzi, Francesc ArtigasAbstractMajor depressive disorder (MDD) is a leading cause of disability worldwide, with a poorly known pathophysiology and sub-optimal treatment, based on serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) reuptake inhibitors. We review existing theories on MDD, paying special attention to the role played by the ventral anterior cingulate cortex (vACC) or its rodent equivalent, infralimbic cortex (IL), which tightly control the activity of brainstem monoamine neurons (including raphe 5-HT neurons) via descending afferents. Further, astrocytes regulate excitatory synapse activity via glutamate reuptake through astrocytic transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 (GLAST and GLT-1 in rodents), and alterations of astrocyte number/function have been reported in MDD patients and suicide victims. We recently assessed the impact of reducing GLAST/GLT-1 function in IL on emotional behavior and serotonergic function in rodents. The acute pharmacological blockade of GLT-1 with dihydrokainate (DHK) in rat IL evoked an antidepressant-like effect mediated by local AMPA-R activation and a subsequent enhancement of serotonergic function. No effects were produced by DHK microinfusion in prelimbic cortex (PrL). In the second model, a moderate small interfering RNAs (siRNA)-induced reduction of GLAST and GLT-1 expression in mouse IL markedly increased local glutamatergic neurotransmission and evoked a depressive-like phenotype (reversed by citalopram and ketamine), and reduced serotonergic function and BDNF expression in cortical/hippocampal areas. As for DHK, siRNA microinfusion in PrL did not evoke behavioral/neurochemical effects. Overall, both studies support a critical role of the astrocyte-neuron communication in the control of excitatory neurotransmission in IL, and subsequently, on emotional behavior, via the downstream associated changes on serotonergic function.
  • The role of prolactin in co-ordinating fertility and metabolic adaptations
           during reproduction
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 10 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Sharon R. Ladyman, Eleni C.R. Hackwell, Rosemary S.E. BrownAbstractMammalian pregnancy and lactation is accompanied by a period of infertility that takes place in the midst of a sustained increase in food intake. Indeed, successful reproduction in females is dependent on co-ordination of the distinct systems that regulate reproduction and metabolism. Rather than arising from different mechanisms during pregnancy and lactation, we propose that elevations in lactogenic hormones (predominant among these being prolactin and the placental lactogens), are ideally placed to influence both of these systems at the appropriate time. We review the literature examining the impacts of lactogens on fertility and energy homeostasis in the virgin state, during pregnancy and lactation and potential long-term impacts of reproductive experience. Taken together, the literature indicates that duration and pattern of lactogen exposure is a vital factor in the ability of these hormones to alter reproduction and food intake. Transient increases in prolactin, as typically seen in healthy virgin females and males, are unable to exert lasting impacts. Importantly, both suppression of fertility and increased food intake are only observed following exposure to chronically-elevated levels of lactogens. Physiologically, the only time this pattern of lactogenic secretion is maintained in the healthy female is during pregnancy and lactation, when co-ordination between these regulatory systems emerges.
  • Modulating neuroinflammation and oxidative stress to prevent epilepsy and
           improve outcomes after traumatic brain injury
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Clifford L. Eastman, Raimondo D'Ambrosio, Thota GaneshAbstractTraumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of death and disability in young adults worldwide. TBI survival is associated with persistent neuropsychiatric and neurological impairments, including posttraumatic epilepsy (PTE). To date, no pharmaceutical treatment has been found to prevent PTE or ameliorate neurological/neuropsychiatric deficits after TBI. Brain trauma results in immediate mechanical damage to brain cells and blood vessels that may never be fully restored given the limited regenerative capacity of brain tissue. This primary insult unleashes cascades of events, prominently including neuroinflammation and massive oxidative stress that evolve over time, expanding the brain injury, but also clearing cellular debris and establishing homeostasis in the region of damage. Accumulating evidence suggests that oxidative stress and neuroinflammatory sequelae of TBI contribute to posttraumatic epileptogenesis. This review will focus on possible roles of reactive oxygen species (ROS), their interactions with neuroinflammation in posttraumatic epileptogenesis, and emerging therapeutic strategies after TBI. We propose that inhibitors of the professional ROS-generating enzymes, the NADPH oxygenases and myeloperoxidase alone, or combined with selective inhibition of cyclooxygenase mediated signaling may have promise for the treatment or prevention of PTE and other sequelae of TBI.
  • Modifying genetic epilepsies – results from studies on tuberous
           sclerosis complex.
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 6 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Sergiusz Jozwiak, Katarzyna Kotulska, Michael Wong, Martina BebinAbstractTuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is an autosomal dominant neurocutaneous disorder affecting approximately 1 in 6,000 in general population and represents one of the most common genetic causes of epilepsy. Epilepsy affects 90% of the patients and appears in the first 2 years of life in the majority of them. Early onset of epilepsy in the first year of life is associated with high risk of cognitive decline and neuropsychiatric problems including autism.Recently TSC has been recognized as a model of genetic epilepsies. TSC is a genetic condition with known dysregulated mTOR pathway and is increasingly viewed as a model for human epileptogenesis. Moreover, TSC is characterized by a hyperactivation of mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) pathway, and mTOR activation was showed to be implicated in epileptogenesis in many animal models and human epilepsies. Recently published studies documented positive effect of preventive or disease modifying treatment of epilepsy in infants with high risk of epilepsy with significantly lower incidence of epilepsy and better cognitive outcome. Further studies on preventive treatment of epilepsy in other genetic epilepsies of early childhood are considered.
  • Seizure prediction and intervention
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 5 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Christian Meisel, Tobias LoddenkemperAbstractEpilepsy treatment is challenging due to a lack of essential diagnostic tools, including methods for reliable seizure detection in the ambulatory setting, to assess seizure risk over time and to monitor treatment efficacy. This lack of objective diagnostics constitutes a significant barrier to better treatments, raises methodological concerns about the antiseizure medication evaluation process and, to patients, is a main issue contributing to the disease burden. Recent years have seen rapid progress towards better diagnostics that meet these needs of epilepsy patients and clinicians. Availability of comprehensive data and the rise of more powerful computational analysis methods have driven progress in this area. Here, we provide an overview on data- and theory-driven approaches aimed at identifying methods to reliably detect and forecast seizures as well as to monitor brain excitability and treatment efficacy in epilepsy. We provide a particular account on neural criticality, the hypothesis that cortical networks may be poised in a critical state at the boundary between different types of dynamics, and discuss its role in informing diagnostics to track cortex excitability and seizure risk in recent experiments. With the further expansion of digitalization in medicine, tele-medicine and long-term, ambulatory monitoring, these computationally based methods may gain more relevance in epilepsy  in the future.
  • The C loop at the orthosteric binding site is critically involved in GABAA
           receptor gating
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 3 December 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Katarzyna Terejko, Przemysław T. Kaczor, Michał A. Michałowski, Agnieszka Dąbrowska, Jerzy W. MozrzymasGABAA receptors (GABAARs) play a crucial role in mammalian adult brain inhibition. The dysfunction of GABAergic drive is related to such disorders as epilepsy, schizophrenia, and depression. Substantial progress has recently been made in describing the static structure of GABAARs, but the molecular mechanisms that underlie the activation process remain elusive. The C loop of the GABAAR structure shows the largest movement upon ligand binding to the orthosteric binding site, a phenomenon that is referred to as “capping.” The C loop is known to be involved in agonist binding, but its role in the gating of Cys-loop receptors is still debated. Herein, we investigated this issue by analyzing the impact of a β2F200 residue mutation of the C loop on gating properties of α1β2γ2 GABAARs. Extensive analyses and the modeling of current responses to saturating agonist application demonstrated that this mutation strongly affected preactivation, opening, closing and desensitization, i.e. all considered gating steps. Single-channel analysis revealed that the β2F200 mutation slowed all shut time components, and open times were shortened. Model fitting of these single-channel data further confirmed that the β2F200 mutation strongly affected all of the gating characteristics. We also found that this mutation altered receptor sensitivity to the benzodiazepine flurazepam, which was attributable to a change in preactivation kinetics. In silico analysis indicated that the β2F200 mutation resulted in distortion of the C loop structure, causing the movement of its tip from the binding site. Altogether, we provide the first evidence that C loop critically controls GABAAR gating.Graphical abstractImage 108
  • The Current Approach of the Epilepsy Therapy Screening Program Contract
           Site for Identifying Improved Therapies for the Treatment of
           Pharmacoresistant Seizures in Epilepsy.
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 30 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Karen S. Wilcox, Peter J. West, Cameron S. MetcalfAbstractThe Epilepsy Therapy Screening Program (ETSP), formerly known as the Anticonvulsant Screening Program (ASP), has played an important role in the preclinical evaluation of many of the antiseizure drugs (ASDs) that have been approved by the FDA and thus made available for the treatment of seizures. Recent changes to the animal models used at the contract site of the ETSP at the University of Utah have been implemented in an attempt to better model the unmet clinical needs of people with pharmacoresistant epilepsy and thus identify improved therapies. In this review, we describe the changes that have occurred over the last several years in the screening approach used at the contract site and, in particular, detail the pharmacology associated with several of the animal models and assays that are either new to the program or have been recently characterized in more depth. There is optimism that the refined approach used by the ETSP contract site, wherein etiologically relevant models that include those with spontaneous seizures are used, will identify novel, potentially disease modifying therapies for people with pharmacoresistant epilepsy and those at risk for developing epilepsy.
  • A systems-level framework for anti-epilepsy drug discovery
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 28 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Michael R. Johnson, Rafal M. KaminskiAbstractModern anti-seizure drug development yielded benefits in terms of improved pharmacokinetics, safety and tolerability profiles, but offered no advances in efficacy compared to previous older generations of anti-seizure drugs. Despite significant advances in our understanding of the genetic bases to epilepsy, and a welcome renewed interest on the severe monogenic epilepsies, modern genetics has yet to directly inform more effective or disease-modifying anti-seizure drugs. Here, we describe a new approach to the identification of novel disease modifying anti-epilepsy drugs. The systems genetics approach aims to first identify pathophysiological mechanisms by integrating polygenic risk with cellular gene expression profiles and then to relate these molecular mechanisms to druggable targets using a gene regulatory (regulome) framework. The approach offers an exciting and flexible framework for future drug discovery in epilepsy, and is applicable to any disease for which appropriate cell-type and disease-context specific data exist.
  • Simultaneous activation of mGlu2 and muscarinic receptors reverses
           MK-801-induced cognitive decline in rodents
    • Abstract: Publication date: Available online 27 November 2019Source: NeuropharmacologyAuthor(s): Paulina Cieślik, Helena Domin, Agnieszka Chocyk, Piotr Gruca, Ewa Litwa, Agata Płoska, Adrianna Radulska, Iwona Pelikant-Małecka, Piotr Brański, Leszek Kalinowski, Joanna M. WierońskaAbstractThe activity of an allosteric agonist of muscarinic M1 receptor, VU0357017, and a positive allosteric modulator (PAM) of M5 receptor, VU0238429, were investigated alone or in combination with the mGlu2 receptor PAM, LY487379 using the following behavioural tests: prepulse inhibition (PPI), novel object recognition (NOR), and spatial delayed alternation (SDA). VU0357017 (10 and 20 mg/kg) and VU0238429 (5 and 10 mg/kg) reversed deficits in PPI while VU0238429 (2.5 and 5 mg/kg) was effective in SDA. The simultaneous administration of subeffective doses of M1 or M5 activators (5, 1, or 0.25 mg/kg) with LY487379 (0.5 mg/kg) induced the same effect as that observed for the active dose of each compound. Selective M1 or M5 receptor blockers antagonized the effect exerted by these combinations, and pharmacokinetic studies confirmed independent transport through the blood-brain barrier. The expression of both receptors (M1 and M5) was established in brain structures involved in cognition (neocortex, hippocampus, and entorhinal cortex) in both the rat and the mouse brains by immunofluorescence staining. Specifically, double neuronal staining of mGlu2-M1 and mGlu2-M5 receptors was observed in many areas of the rat brain, while the number of double-stained mGlu2-M1 receptors was moderate in the mouse brain with no mGlu2-M5 colocalization. Finally, the combined administration of subeffective doses of the compounds did not alter prolactin levels or motor coordination, in contrast to the compounds given alone at the highest dose or in combination with standard neuroleptics.
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