5-HT2- and D1-mechanisms of the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala enhance conditioned fear and impair unconditioned fear.
ABSTRACT The inferior colliculus (IC) is involved in processing of auditory information, but also integrates acoustic information of aversive nature. In fact, chemical stimulation of the IC with semicarbazide (SMC) - an inhibitor of the GABA synthesizing enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase - has been found to cause defensive behavior in an open-field test and functions as an unconditioned stimulus in the place conditioned aversion test (PCA). A question has arisen regarding whether the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala (BLA) is involved in the acquisition of the aversive information ascending from the IC and whether dopaminergic and serotoninergic mechanisms of the BLA regulate this process. Recent evidence has shown that inactivation of the BLA with muscimol inhibits the PCA and causes an increase in the aversiveness of the chemical stimulation of the IC. Based on this, we examined the effects of ketanserin and SCH-23390, antagonists of the 5HT(2) and D(1) receptors, respectively, on the conditioned and unconditioned fear elicited by IC stimulation with SMC. The results obtained confirm the crucial role of 5-HT(2)- and D(1)-mechanisms of the BLA on conditioned fear in that ketanserin and SCH-23390 injections into the BLA caused a reduction in the PCA. On the other hand, ketanserin and SCH-23390 injections into the BLA enhanced the aversiveness of the IC injections of SMC. These findings suggest that while 5-HT(2) and DA(1) mechanisms in the BLA appear to facilitate the conditioned fear they inhibit the unconditioned fear triggered by IC activation.
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ABSTRACT: The lateral/basolateral amygdala (BLA) forms an integral part of the neural circuitry controlling innate anxiety and learned fear. More recently, BLA dependent modulation of self-administration behaviors suggests a much broader role in the regulation of reward evaluation. To test this, we employed a self-administration paradigm that procedurally segregates "seeking" (exemplified as lever-press behaviors) from consumption (drinking) directed at a sweetened ethanol solution. Microinjection of the nonselective serotonin type-2 receptor agonist, alpha-methyl-5-hydroxytryptamine (α-m5HT) into the BLA reduced lever pressing behaviors in a dose-dependent fashion. This was associated with a significant reduction in the number of response-bouts expressed during non-reinforced sessions without altering the size of a bout or the rate of responding. Conversely, intra-BLA α-m5HT only modestly effected consumption-related behaviors; the highest dose reduced the total time spent consuming a sweetened ethanol solution but did not inhibit the total number of licks, number of lick bouts, or amount of solution consumed during a session. In vitro neurophysiological characterization of BLA synaptic responses showed that α-m5HT significantly reduced extracellular field potentials. This was blocked by the 5-HT2A/C antagonist ketanserin suggesting that 5-HT2-like receptors mediate the behavioral effect of α-m5HT. During whole-cell patch current-clamp recordings, we subsequently found that α-m5HT increased action potential threshold and hyperpolarized the resting membrane potential of BLA pyramidal neurons. Together, our findings show that the activation of BLA 5-HT2A/C receptors inhibits behaviors related to reward-seeking by suppressing BLA principal neuron activity. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that the BLA modulates reward-related behaviors and provides specific insight into BLA contributions during operant self-administration of a sweetened ethanol solution.Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience 01/2014; 8:5.
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ABSTRACT: Significant differences in physical and behavioural/emotional/cognitive predictors and attributes, as well as of neurochemical inducers of behaviour, between dominant and subordinate animals are discussed. It is still unknown whether these factors are the causes of differences between dominants and subordinates, or vice versa whether the differences between dominants and subordinates are the origin of differences in these factors. The possibility is discussed that no differences exist among juveniles in the concentrations of neurochemical agents (known in the literature as determinants of dominance) between the brains of future dominants and future subordinates. We describe a study design that makes the assessment of the 'original' neurochemical profile of the brain possible.Biological Reviews 02/2014; · 10.26 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to explore effects on anxiety-like behavior of D1 dopamine receptor agonist, SKF-38393, and of D1 dopamine receptor antagonist, SCH-23390, given alone or in combination with a low dose of 17 β -estradiol (17 β -E2) to ovariectomized (OVX) rats. Two weeks after surgery, OVX rats began 14 days of treatment with the vehicle, a low dose of 17 β -E2 (5.0 μ g/rat, s.c.), SKF-38393 (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.), SCH-23390 (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.), SKF-38393 plus 17 β -E2, or SCH-23390 plus 17 β -E2. The animals were tested in the black and white model (BWM) and the open field test (OFT). SCH-23390 (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) alone or in a combination with a low dose of 17 β -E2 (5.0 μ g/rat, s.c.) resulted in anxiolytic-like effect in OVX rats in the BWM. Repeated treatment with SCH-23390 and 17 β -E2 profoundly increased anxiolytic-like effect of single substances exerted per se. Coadministration of SCH-23390 with 17 β -E2 increased frequency of rearing and grooming in OVX rats in OFT. SKF-38393 (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) treatment failed to alter anxiety-like behavior in OVX rats in the BWM. The results of the present study suggest that 17 β -E2 and SCH-23390 interact to exert anxiolytic-like action and that each of these drugs can potentiate effects of each other.BioMed research international. 01/2014; 2014:847821.