Effects of postnatal social isolation on hormonal and immune responses of pigs to an acute endotoxin challenge.
ABSTRACT Social stress during early postnatal life often results in long-term effects on neuroendocrine and immune adaptation mechanisms. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to determine the influence of a 2-h daily social isolation from Day 3 to Day 11 on the acute and long-term proinflammatory and neuroendocrine responses of piglets challenged with the bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 100 microg/kg body weight). Peripheral LPS administration significantly increased plasma concentrations of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), ACTH and cortisol in isolated and control pigs. However, the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis after LPS stimulation was not significantly affected by isolation treatment, whereas the prior social isolation diminished the plasma TNF-alpha response to LPS 1 day as well as 45 days after the isolation period. The hippocampal TNF-alpha concentration in response to LPS was also reduced in priorly isolated pigs compared to control animals. Furthermore, the significant increase of TNF-alpha in the spleen caused by LPS was associated with a dramatic decrease in glucocorticoid receptor (GR) binding. The GR binding in hippocampus was increased in isolated pigs and was significantly decreased after LPS injection. In addition, the repeated isolation stressor was shown to increase hippocampal levels of interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta). The present results indicate that repeated social isolation of neonatal pigs may cause long-term effects on proinflammatory regulation at the periphery and in the brain following immune challenge with particular importance of TNF-alpha in mediating these interactions.
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ABSTRACT: This article is part of a Special Issue "Neuroendocrine-Immune Axis in Health and Disease." The regulation and function of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis and glucocorticoids have been well conserved across vertebrate species. Glucocorticoids influence a wide range of physiological functions that include glucose regulation, metabolism, inflammatory control, as well as cardiovascular, reproductive, and neuronal effects. Some of these are relatively quick-acting non-genomic effects, but most are slower-acting genomic effects. Thus, any stimulus that affects HPA function has the potential to exert wide-ranging short-term and long-term effects on much of vertebrate physiology. Here, we review the effects of social isolation on the functioning of the HPA axis in social species, and on glucocorticoid physiology in social mammals in particular. Evidence indicates that objective and perceived social isolation alter HPA regulation, although the nature and direction of the HPA response differs among species and across age. The inconsistencies in the direction and nature of HPA effects have implications for drawing cross-species conclusions about the effects of social isolation, and are particularly problematic for understanding HPA-related physiological processes in humans. The animal and human data are incommensurate because, for example, animal studies of objective isolation have typically not been modeled on, or for comparability with, the subjective experience of isolation in humans. An animal model of human isolation must be taken more seriously if we want to advance our understanding of the mechanisms for the effects of objective and perceived isolation in humans.Hormones and Behavior 06/2012; 62(3):314-23. · 3.74 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Early origins of adult disease may be defined as adversity or challenges during early life that alter physiological responses and prime the organism to chronic disease in adult life. Adverse childhood experiences or early life stress (ELS) may be considered a silent independent risk factor capable of predicting future cardiovascular disease risk. Maternal separation (MatSep) provides a suitable model to elucidate the underlying molecular mechanisms by which ELS increases the risk to develop cardiovascular disease in adulthood. The aim of this review is to describe the links between behavioural stress early in life and chronic cardiovascular disease risk in adulthood. We will discuss the following: (i) adult cardiovascular outcomes in humans subjected to ELS, (ii) MatSep as an animal model of ELS as well as the limitations and advantages of this model in rodents and (iii) possible ELS-induced mechanisms that predispose individuals to greater cardiovascular risk. Overall, exposure to a behavioural stressor early in life sensitizes the response to a second stressor later in life, thus unmasking an exaggerated cardiovascular dysfunction that may influence quality of life and life expectancy in adulthood.Acta Physiologica 10/2013; · 4.38 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Childhood adversity alters the predisposition to psychiatric disorders later in life. Those with psychiatric conditions and a history of early adversity exhibit a higher incidence of treatment resistance compared with individuals with no such history. Modulation of the influence early stress exerts over neurobiology may help to prevent the development of psychiatric disorders in some cases, while attenuating the extent of treatment resistance in those with established psychiatric disorders. This review aims to critically evaluate the ability of behavioural, environmental and pharmacologic interventions to modulate neurobiological changes induced by early stress in animal models. Databases were systematically searched to locate literature relevant to this review. Early adversity was defined as stress that resulted from manipulation of the mother-infant relationship. Analysis was restricted to animal models to enable characterisation of how a given intervention altered specific neurobiological changes induced by early stress. A wide variety of changes in neurobiology due to early stress are amenable to intervention. Behavioural interventions in childhood, exercise in adolescence and administration of epigenetic-modifying drugs throughout life appear to best modulate cellar and behavioural alterations induced by childhood adversity. Other pharmacotherapies, such as endocannabinoid system modulators, anti-inflammatories and antidepressants can also influence these neurobiological and behavioural changes that result from early stress, although findings are less consistent at present and require further investigation. Further work is required to examine the influence that behavioural interventions, exercise and epigenetic-modifying drugs exert over alterations that occur following childhood stress in human studies, before possible translational into clinical practice is possible.Translational psychiatry. 01/2014; 4:e390.