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Publications (5)16.91 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The endogenous opioid-like peptide, nociceptin, produces anxiolytic-like effects that are mediated via the nociceptin (NOP) receptor. Similarly, synthetic, non-peptide NOP agonists produce robust anxiolytic-like effects although these effects are limited by marked side effects. In the present studies, the effects of a novel NOP receptor agonist, SCH 655842, were examined in rodent models sensitive to anxiolytic drugs and tests measuring potential adverse affects. Oral administration of SCH 655842 produced robust, anxiolytic-like effects in three species, i.e., rat, guinea pig, and mouse. Specifically, SCH 655842 was effective in rat conditioned lick suppression (3-10 mg/kg) and fear-potentiated startle (3-10 mg/kg) tests, a guinea pig pup vocalization test (1-3 mg/kg), as well as in mouse Geller-Seifter (30 mg/kg) and marble burying (30 mg/kg) tests. The anxiolytic-like effect of SCH 655842 in the conditioned lick suppression test was attenuated by the NOP antagonist, J-113397. In mice, SCH 655842 reduced locomotor activity and body temperature at doses similar to the anxiolytic-like dose and these effects were absent in NOP receptor knockout mice. In rats, SCH 655842 did not produce adverse behavioral effects up to doses of 70-100 mg/kg. Pharmacokinetic studies in the rat confirmed dose-related increases in plasma and brain levels of SCH 655842 across a wide oral dose range. Taken together, SCH 655842 may represent a NOP receptor agonist with improved tolerability compared to other members of this class although further studies are necessary to establish whether this extends to higher species.
    European journal of pharmacology 07/2011; 661(1-3):63-71. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have demonstrated behaviors indicative of anxiolysis in rats pretreated with the nociceptin receptor (opioid receptor like-1, ORL-1) agonist, Ro64-6198. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of Ro64-6198 in anxiety models across three species: rat, guinea pig, and mouse. In addition, the receptor specificity of Ro64-6198 was studied, using the ORL-1 receptor antagonist, J-113397, and ORL-1 receptor knockout (KO) mice. Finally, neurological studies examined potential side effects of Ro64-6198 in the rat and mouse. Ro64-6198 (3-10 mg/kg) increased punished responding in a rat conditioned lick suppression test similarly to chlordiazepoxide (6 mg/kg). This effect of Ro64-6198 was attenuated by J-113397 (10 mg/kg), but not the mu opioid antagonist, naltrexone (3 mg/kg). In addition, Ro64-6198 (1-3 mg/kg) reduced isolation-induced vocalizations in rat and guinea pig pups. Ro64-6198 (3 mg/kg) increased the proportion of punished responding in a mouse Geller-Seifter test in wild-type (WT) but not ORL-1 KO mice, whereas diazepam (1-5.6 mg/kg) was effective in both genotypes. In rats, Ro64-6198 reduced locomotor activity (LMA) and body temperature and impaired rotarod, beam walking, and fixed-ratio (FR) performance at doses of 10-30 mg/kg, i.e., three to ten times higher than an anxiolytic dose. In WT mice, Ro64-6198 (3-10 mg/kg) reduced LMA and rotarod performance, body temperature, and FR responding, but these same measures were unaffected in ORL-1 KO mice. Haloperidol (0.3-3 mg/kg) reduced these measures to a similar extent in both genotypes. These studies confirm the potent, ORL-1 receptor-mediated, anxiolytic-like effects of Ro64-6198, extending the findings across three species. Ro64-6198 has target-based side effects, although the magnitude of these effects varies across species.
    Psychopharmacology 11/2005; 182(1):132-43. · 4.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Patients with Alzheimer's disease suffer from progressive cognitive impairments and show distinct post-mortem neuropathology, including beta-amyloid plaques. Transgenic (Tg) CRND8 mice carry a mutated human amyloid precursor protein gene and show age-related increases in beta-amyloid production and plaque deposition. It was previously reported that during the early stages of plaque deposition, Tg CRND8 mice demonstrated Morris maze impairments. However, it is unknown if Tg mice would be impaired at an earlier age prior to plaque deposition or more impaired at a later age with more extensive plaque deposition. In the current study, we describe Tg CRND8 age-progressing beta-amyloid neuropathology and cognitive abilities in greater detail. At all ages, Tg mice showed normal short-term memory in the Y-maze. Pre-plaque Tg and age-matched Non-Tg mice did not differ in learning the spatial Morris water maze. However, both early and late plaque Tg mice showed impairments during acquisition. In addition, although early plaque Tg mice performed well in the probe trial, late plaque Tg mice demonstrated impaired probe trial performance. Therefore compared to their Non-Tg littermates, Tg CRND8 mice demonstrate cognitive impairments that progressed with age and seemed to coincide with the onset of beta-amyloid plaque deposition.
    Behavioural Brain Research 06/2005; 160(2):344-55. · 3.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent work has shown that neuromedin U (NmU), a peptide initially identified as a smooth muscle contractor, may play a role in regulating food intake and energy homeostasis. To further evaluate this putative function, we measured food intake, body weight, energy expenditure and glucose homeostasis in transgenic mice that ubiquitously overexpress murine proNmU. NmU transgenic mice were lighter and had less somatic and liver fat, were hypophagic, and had improved insulin sensitivity as judged by an intraperitoneal insulin tolerance test. Transgenic mice had higher levels of hypothalamic NPY, POMC and MCH mRNA. There was no difference in O2 consumption between genotypes; however, NmU transgenic mice displayed a modest increase in respiratory quotient during food deprivation and refeeding. There were no behavioral disturbances in the NmU transgenic mice that could account for the results (e.g. changes in locomotor activity). When placed on a high-fat diet, transgenic mice remained lighter than wild-type mice and ate less, but gained weight at a rate similar to wild-type mice. Despite the increased weight gain with high-fat feeding, glucose tolerance was significantly improved in the transgenic mice. These findings support the hypothesized role of NmU as an endogenous anorexigenic peptide.
    Journal of Endocrinology 05/2005; 185(1):151-64. · 4.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Prepulse inhibition (PPI), a form of sensorimotor gating, occurs when an auditory startle response is markedly inhibited by a preceding sub-threshold stimulus (prepulse). Deficits in PPI have been demonstrated in patients with certain psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia, and in laboratory animals following specific pharmacological manipulations. Patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) have not been tested in PPI, but have been shown to have abnormal sensory gating in another paradigm. Transgenic (Tg) CRND8 mice, which model Alzheimer's disease, carry the Swedish and Indiana familial Alzheimer's disease mutations of the human amyloid precursor protein gene and show age-related increases in beta-amyloid (Abeta) production, as well as plaque deposition. The present experiment investigated auditory startle threshold and PPI in TgCRND8 mice at various ages. In two longitudinal studies, PPI was examined in male TgCRND8 mice and non-transgenic (non-Tg) controls at 6-8 weeks of age (pre-plaque), and every 2 weeks thereafter until all mice were at least 16 weeks old (post-plaque). In a cross-sectional study, three different age sets of nai;ve TgCRND8 and non-Tg mice were tested: 10-12, 12-14, and 15-17 weeks old. In all three studies, TgCRND8 mice consistently and robustly demonstrated an enhanced response to a range of auditory startle stimuli compared to non-Tg mice. In addition, the TgCRND8 mice exhibited modest reductions in PPI, compared to non-Tg controls. These PPI deficits were present at pre- and post-plaque time points and did not appear to intensify with age; thus, they do not seem to correlate with the known neuropathology of TgCRND8 mice.
    Brain Research 01/2004; 994(1):99-106. · 2.88 Impact Factor