Environmental enrichment alters neurotrophin levels after fetal alcohol exposure in rats.
ABSTRACT Prenatal alcohol exposure causes abnormal brain development, leading to behavioral deficits, some of which can be ameliorated by environmental enrichment. As both environmental enrichment and prenatal alcohol exposure can individually alter neurotrophin expression, we studied the interaction of prenatal alcohol and postweaning environmental enrichment on brain neurotrophin levels in rats.
Pregnant rats received alcohol by gavage, 0, 4, or 6 g/kg/d (Zero, Low, or High groups), or no treatment (Naïve group), on gestational days 8 to 20. After weaning on postnatal day 21, offspring were housed for 6 weeks in Isolated, Social, or Enriched conditions. Levels of nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) were then measured in frontal cortex, occipital cortex, hippocampus, and cerebellar vermis.
Prenatal alcohol exposure increased NGF levels in frontal cortex (High-dose group) and cerebellar vermis (High- and Low-dose groups); increased BDNF in frontal cortex, occipital cortex and hippocampus (Low-dose groups), and increased NT-3 in hippocampus and cerebellar vermis (High-dose). Environmental enrichment resulted in lower NGF, BDNF, and NT-3 levels in occipital cortex and lower NGF in frontal cortex. The only significant interaction between prenatal alcohol treatment and environment was in cerebellar vermis where NT-3 levels were higher for enriched animals after prenatal alcohol exposure, but not for animals housed under Isolated or Social conditions.
Both prenatal alcohol exposure and postweaning housing conditions alter brain neurotrophin levels, but the effects appear to be largely independent. Although environmental enrichment can improve functional outcomes, these results do not provide strong support for the hypothesis that rearing in a complex environment ameliorates prenatal alcohol effects on brain neurotrophin levels in rats.
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ABSTRACT: The field of behavioral neuroscience has been successful in using an animal model of enriched environments for over five decades to measure the rehabilitative and preventative effects of sensory, cognitive and motor stimulation in animal models. Several key principles of enriched environments match those used in sensory integration therapy, a treatment used for children with neurodevelopmental disorders. This paper reviews the paradigm of environmental enrichment, compares animal models of enriched environments to principles of sensory integration treatment, and discusses applications for the rehabilitation of neurodevelopmental disorders. Based on this review, the essential features in the enriched environment paradigm which should be included in sensory integration treatment are multiple sensory experiences, novelty in the environment, and active engagement in challenging cognitive, sensory, and motor tasks. Use of sensory integration treatment may be most applicable for children with anxiety, hypersensitivity, repetitive behaviors or heightened levels of stress. Additionally, individuals with deficits in social behavior, social participation, or impairments in learning and memory may show gains with this type of treatment.Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders 09/2010; 2(3):120-32. · 3.45 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The neurotrophins brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and neurotrophic factor 3 (NT3) could play a role in addictive behavior. Interactions between BDNF and dopamine transmission influence the alcohol intake. It has been hypothesized that extensive alcohol consumption leads to diminished circulating BDNF levels and impaired BDNF-mediated protective mechanisms. What is more, alcohol dependency causes changes in lipid metabolism which in turn may influence the neurotrophin system. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that alcohol withdrawal increases the serum levels of BDNF in alcoholic patients and investigated correlations between serum BDNF and NT3 and alcohol in breath as well as with the body-mass-index (BMI), lipoprotein profiles and lifestyle factors in 110 male in-patients diagnosed with alcohol addiction on the first day after admission and at discharge. The intoxication level (alcohol in breath at admission) was significantly correlated with liver enzymes and BDNF concentrations (R = .28; p = .004). Patients with positive breath-alcohol test at admission had about 9 times higher NT3 levels and higher liver enzyme concentration levels than nonintoxicated subjects. Alcohol intoxicated patients with pathological aspartate aminase (ASAT) levels had even higher NT3 level (F = 5.41; p = .022). The concentration of NT3 was positively associated with the (BMI) (admission R = .36; p = .004; discharge R = .33; p = .001), and the obese patients had 3 to 5 times higher NT3 concentration than the others. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) concentration levels were found to positively correlate with NT3 concentration levels (admission R = .025; p = .015 discharge R = .24; p = .23). Other than expected, the levels of NT3 and to a lesser extent BDNF levels, were found to be significantly increased in acute alcohol abuse. Alcohol deprivation did not significantly change the serum neurotrophin levels at admission. NT3 levels were positively correlated with the BMI and LDL levels. Because of expected difference between genders, we recommend investigating these correlations further in patients of both genders.Journal of molecular psychiatry. 01/2013; 1(1):20.
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ABSTRACT: The authors study a rapid coherent acquisition scheme, using a truncated sequential-probability-ratio test (TSPRT), for direct-sequence-spread spectrum (DS/SS) systems. Since the partial correlation of pseudonoise (PN) sequences is difficult to characterize, the worst-case partial correlation is considered. Linearized bounds of the partial correlation are used for designing the TSPRT so that the resulting test can achieve the prescribed acquisition condition. The design parameters of the TSPRT are chosen so that the average sample size (ASN) is minimized while keeping the maximum ASN smaller than that of the fixed dwell scheme with similar false alarm and miss probabilities. Some simulation results are obtained, and they agree well with analytic resultsMilitary Communications Conference, 1989. MILCOM '89. Conference Record. Bridging the Gap. Interoperability, Survivability, Security., 1989 IEEE; 11/1989