Ectopic hippocampal neurogenesis in adolescent male rats following alcohol dependence.
ABSTRACT The adolescent hippocampus is highly vulnerable to alcohol-induced damage, which could contribute to their increased susceptibility to alcohol use disorder. Altered adult hippocampal neurogenesis represents one potential mechanism by which alcohol (ethanol) affects hippocampal function. Based on the vulnerability of the adolescent hippocampus to alcohol-induced damage, and prior reports of long-term alcohol-induced effects on adult neurogenesis, we predicted adverse effects on adult neurogenesis in the adolescent brain following abstinence from alcohol dependence. Thus, we examined neurogenesis in adolescent male rats during abstinence following a 4-day binge model of alcohol dependence. Bromodeoxyuridine and Ki67 immunohistochemistry revealed a 2.2-fold increase in subgranular zone cell proliferation after 7 days of abstinence. Increased proliferation was followed by a 75% increase in doublecortin expression and a 56% increase in surviving bromodeoxyuridine-labeled cells 14 and 35 days post-ethanol exposure, respectively. The majority of newborn cells in ethanol and control groups co-localized with NeuN, indicating a neuronal phenotype and therefore a 1.6-fold increase in hippocampal neurogenesis during abstinence. Although these results mirror the magnitude of reactive neurogenesis described in adult rat studies, ectopic bromodeoxyuridine and doublecortin positive cells were detected in the molecular layer and hilus of adolescent rats displaying severe withdrawal symptoms, an effect that has not been described in adults. The presence of ectopic neuroblasts suggests that a potential defect exists in the functional incorporation of new neurons into the existing hippocampal circuitry for a subset of rats. Age-related differences in functional incorporation could contribute to the increased vulnerability of the adolescent hippocampus to ethanol.
SourceAvailable from: Daniel M Curlik, II[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The dentate gyrus of the hippocampal formation generates new granule neurons throughout life. The number of neurons produced each day is inversely related to age, with thousands more produced during puberty than during adulthood, and many fewer produced during senescence. In adulthood, approximately half of these cells undergo apoptosis shortly after they are generated. Most of these cells can be rescued from death by effortful and successful learning experiences (Gould et al., 1999; Waddell and Shors, 2008; Curlik and Shors, 2011). Once rescued, the newly-generated cells differentiate into neurons, and remain in the hippocampus for at least several months (Leuner et al., 2004). Here, we report that many new hippocampal cells also undergo cell death during puberty. Because the juvenile brain is more plastic than during adulthood, and because many experiences are new, we hypothesized that a great number of cells would be rescued by learning during puberty. Indeed, adolescent rats that successfully acquired the trace eyeblink response retained thousands more cells than animals that were not trained, and those that failed to learn. Because the hippocampus generates thousands more cells during puberty than during adulthood, these results support the idea that the adolescent brain is especially responsive to learning. This enhanced response can have significant consequences for the functional integrity of the hippocampus. Such a massive increase in cell proliferation is likely an adaptive response as the young animal must emerge from the care of its mother to face the dangers, challenges, and opportunities of adulthood.Frontiers in Neuroscience 04/2014; 8:70. DOI:10.3389/fnins.2014.00070
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Although adolescence is a common age to initiate alcohol consumption, the long-term consequences of exposure to alcohol at this time of considerable brain maturation are largely unknown. In studies utilizing rodents, behavioral evidence is beginning to emerge suggesting that the hippocampus may be persistently affected by repeated ethanol exposure during adolescence, but not by comparable alcohol exposure in adulthood. The purpose of this series of experiments was to explore a potential mechanism of hippocampal dysfunction in adults exposed to ethanol during adolescence. Given that disruption in adult neurogenesis has been reported to impair performance on tasks thought to be hippocampally related, we used immunohistochemistry to assess levels of doublecortin (DCX), an endogenous marker of immature neurons, in the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus 3-4 weeks after adolescent (postnatal day, PD28-48) or adult (PD70-90) intermittent ethanol exposure to 4 g/kg ethanol administered intragastrically. We also investigated another neurogenic niche, the subventricular zone (SVZ), to determine if the effects of ethanol exposure were region specific. Levels of cell proliferation and cell death were also examined in the DG via assessing Ki67 and cleaved caspase-3 immunoreactivity, respectively. Significantly less DCX was observed in the DG of adolescent (but not adult) ethanol-exposed animals about 4 weeks after exposure when these animals were compared to control age-mates. The effects of adolescent ethanol on DCX immunoreactivity were specific to the hippocampus, with no significant exposure effects emerging in the SVZ. In both the DG and the SVZ there was a significant age-related decline in neurogenesis as indexed by DCX. The persistent effect of adolescent ethanol exposure on reduced DCX in the DG appears to be related to significant increases in cell death, with significantly more cleaved caspase-3-positive immunoreactivity observed in the adolescent ethanol group compared to controls, but no alterations in cell proliferation when indexed by Ki67. These results suggest that a history of adolescent ethanol exposure results in lowered levels of differentiating neurons, probably due at least in part to increased cell death of immature neurons. These effects were evident in adulthood, weeks following termination of the chronic exposure, and may contribute to previously reported behavioral deficits on hippocampal-related tasks after chronic ethanol exposure in adolescence. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.Developmental Neuroscience 06/2014; 36(3-4). DOI:10.1159/000362874 · 2.45 Impact Factor
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to investigate if a novelty-seeking phenotype mediates the long-lasting consequences of intermittent EtOH intoxication during adolescence. The hole board test was employed to classify adolescent mice as High- or Low-Novelty Seekers. Subsequently, animals were administered ethanol (1.25 or 2.5 g/kg) on two consecutive days at 48-h intervals over a 14-day period. Anxiety levels - measured using the elevated plus maze- spontaneous motor activity and social interaction test were studied 3 weeks later. A different set of mice underwent the same procedure, but received only the 2.5 g/kg dose of ethanol. Three weeks later, in order to induce CPP, the same animals were administered 1 or 6 mg/kg of cocaine or 1 or 2.5 mg/kg MDMA. The results revealed a decrease in aggressive behaviors and an anxiolytic profile in HNS mice and longer latency to explore the novel object by LNS mice. Ethanol exposure enhanced the reinforcing effects of cocaine and MDMA in both groups when CPP was induced with a sub-threshold dose of the drugs. The extinguished cocaine-induced CPP (1 and 6 mg/kg) was reinstated after a priming dose in HNS animals only. Our results confirm that intermittent EtOH administration during adolescence induces long-lasting effects that are manifested in adult life, and that there is an association between these effects and the novelty-seeking phenotype.PLoS ONE 03/2014; 9(3):e92576. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0092576 · 3.53 Impact Factor