L Descarries

University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

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Publications (149)569.77 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Recent studies have proposed that glutamate corelease by mesostriatal dopamine (DA) neurons regulates behavioral activation by psychostimulants. How and when glutamate release by DA neurons might play this role remains unclear. Considering evidence for early expression of the type 2 vesicular glutamate transporter in mesencephalic DA neurons, we hypothesized that this cophenotype is particularly important during development. Using a conditional gene knock-out approach to selectively disrupt the Vglut2 gene in mouse DA neurons, we obtained in vitro and in vivo evidence for reduced growth and survival of mesencephalic DA neurons, associated with a decrease in the density of DA innervation in the nucleus accumbens, reduced activity-dependent DA release, and impaired motor behavior. These findings provide strong evidence for a functional role of the glutamatergic cophenotype in the development of mesencephalic DA neurons, opening new perspectives into the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative disorders involving the mesostriatal DA system.
    Journal of Neuroscience 11/2012; 32(48):17477-91. · 6.75 Impact Factor
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    Laurent Descarries, Mustaph Riad
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    ABSTRACT: Serotonin (5-HT) 5-HT(1A) autoreceptors (5-HT(1A)autoR) and the plasmalemmal 5-HT transporter (SERT) are key elements in the regulation of central 5-HT function and its responsiveness to antidepressant drugs. Previous immuno-electron microscopic studies in rats have demonstrated an internalization of 5-HT(1A)autoR upon acute administration of the selective agonist 8-OH-DPAT or the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressant fluoxetine. Interestingly, it was subsequently shown in cats as well as in humans that this internalization is detectable by positron emission tomography (PET) imaging with the 5-HT(1A) radioligand [(18)F]MPPF. Further immunocytochemical studies also revealed that, after chronic fluoxetine treatment, the 5-HT(1A)autoR, although present in normal density on the plasma membrane of 5-HT cell bodies and dendrites, do not internalize when challenged with 8-OH-DPAT. Resensitization requires several weeks after discontinuation of the chronic fluoxetine treatment. In contrast, the SERT internalizes in both the cell bodies and axon terminals of 5-HT neurons after chronic but not acute fluoxetine treatment. Moreover, the total amount of SERT immunoreactivity is then reduced, suggesting that SERT is not only internalized, but also degraded in the course of the treatment. Ongoing and future investigations prompted by these finding are briefly outlined by way of conclusion.
    Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences 09/2012; 367(1601):2416-25. · 6.23 Impact Factor
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    Paul R Albert, Chawki Benkelfat, Laurent Descarries
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    ABSTRACT: The serotonin (5-HT) hypothesis of depression dates from the 1960s. It originally postulated that a deficit in brain serotonin, corrected by antidepressant drugs, was the origin of the illness. Nowadays, it is generally accepted that recurring mood disorders are brain diseases resulting from the combination, to various degrees, of genetic and other biological as well as environmental factors, evolving through the lifespan. All areas of neuroscience, from genes to behaviour, molecules to mind, and experimental to clinical, are actively engaged in attempts at elucidating the pathophysiology of depression and the mechanisms underlying the efficacy of antidepressant treatments. This first of two special issues of Philosophical Transactions B seeks to provide an overview of current developments in the field, with an emphasis on cellular and molecular mechanisms, and how their unravelling opens new perspectives for future research.
    Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences 09/2012; 367(1601):2378-81. · 6.23 Impact Factor
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    Luc Zimmer, Laurent Descarries
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    ABSTRACT: Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) and its various receptors are involved in numerous CNS functions. Among the currently known 5-HT receptors, the 5-HT 1A receptor is the best characterized subtype. It is tightly implicated in the pathogenesis of mood disorders, notably in depression, and thus represents an important target for drug therapy. Binding to 5-HT 1A receptors can be visualized and quantified by positron emission tomography (PET), facilitating the translation from animal research to man. Using the 5-HT 1A radiotracer [ 18 F]MPPF, recent PET studies in cat and human have provided evidence that internalization of 5-HT 1A autoreceptors is amenable to in vivo neuroimaging at the very onset of specific serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) administration. The in vivo detection of this phenomenon in human is promising in terms of clinical management, particularly as an early biomarker of responsiveness to SSRI treatment. However, several questions are still pending regarding the correlation between 5-HT 1A internalization at the onset of the treatment and the ensuing therapeutic efficacy. T he neurotransmitter serotonin (5-hydroxytrypta-mine, 5-HT) is implicated in a broad spectrum of functions and behaviors, 1 as well as in a number of psychiatric disorders, notably pathological anxiety and depression. 2 This system originates in 5-HT neurons mostly regrouped in raphe nuclei of the brainstem, and particularly in the midbrain dorsal (DRN) and median (MRN) raphe nuclei, whose ascending projections spread to all regions * Correspondence to: zimmer@univ-lyon1.fr
    WIREs Membrane Transport and Signaling. 05/2012; 1(3):239-245.
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    ABSTRACT: Despite the increasing use of genetically modified mice to investigate the dopamine (DA) system, little is known about the ultrastructural features of the striatal DA innervation in the mouse. This issue is particularly relevant in view of recent evidence for expression of the vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) by a subset of mesencephalic DA neurons in mouse as well as rat. We used immuno-electron microscopy to characterize tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-labeled terminals in the core and shell of nucleus accumbens and the neostriatum of two mouse lines in which the Vglut2 gene was selectively disrupted in DA neurons (cKO), their control littermates, and C57BL/6/J wild-type mice, aged P15 or adult. The three regions were also examined in cKO mice and their controls of both ages after dual TH-VGLUT2 immunolabeling. Irrespective of the region, age and genotype, the TH-immunoreactive varicosities appeared similar in size, vesicular content, percentage with mitochondria, and exceedingly low frequency of synaptic membrane specialization. No dually labeled axon terminals were found at either age in control or in cKO mice. Unless TH and VGLUT2 are segregated in different axon terminals of the same neurons, these results favor the view that the glutamatergic cophenotype of mesencephalic DA neurons is more important during the early development of these neurons than for the establishment of their scarce synaptic connectivity. They also suggest that, in mouse even more than rat, the mesostriatal DA system operates mainly through non-targeted release of DA, diffuse transmission and the maintenance of an ambient DA level.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 02/2012; 35(4):527-38. · 3.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Melatonin activates two brain G-protein coupled receptors, MT(1) and MT(2), whose differential roles in the sleep-wake cycle remain to be defined. The novel MT(2) receptor partial agonist, N-{2-[(3-methoxyphenyl) phenylamino] ethyl} acetamide (UCM765), is here shown to selectively promote non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREMS) in rats and mice. The enhancement of NREMS by UCM765 is nullified by the pharmacological blockade or genetic deletion of MT(2) receptors. MT(2), but not MT(1), knock-out mice show a decrease in NREMS compared to the wild strain. Immunohistochemical labeling reveals that MT(2) receptors are localized in sleep-related brain regions, and notably the reticular thalamic nucleus (Rt). Microinfusion of UCM765 in the Rt promotes NREMS, and its systemic administration induces an increase in firing and rhythmic burst activity of Rt neurons, which is blocked by the MT(2) antagonist 4-phenyl-2-propionamidotetralin. Since developing hypnotics that increase NREMS without altering sleep architecture remains a medical challenge, MT(2) receptors may represent a novel target for the treatment of sleep disorders.
    Journal of Neuroscience 12/2011; 31(50):18439-52. · 6.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The mesostriatal dopamine (DA) system contributes to several aspects of responses to rewarding substances and is implicated in conditions such as drug addiction and eating disorders. A subset of DA neurons has been shown to express the type 2 Vesicular glutamate transporter (Vglut2) and may therefore corelease glutamate. In the present study, we analyzed mice with a conditional deletion of Vglut2 in DA neurons (Vglut2(f/f;DAT-Cre)) to address the functional significance of the glutamate-DA cophenotype for responses to cocaine and food reinforcement. Biochemical parameters of striatal DA function were also examined by using DA receptor autoradiography, immediate-early gene quantitative in situ hybridization after cocaine challenge, and DA-selective in vivo chronoamperometry. Mice in which Vglut2 expression had been abrogated in DA neurons displayed enhanced operant self-administration of both high-sucrose food and intravenous cocaine. Furthermore, cocaine seeking maintained by drug-paired cues was increased by 76%, showing that reward-dependent plasticity is perturbed in these mice. In addition, several lines of evidence suggest that adaptive changes occurred in both the ventral and dorsal striatum in the absence of VGLUT2: DA receptor binding was increased, and basal mRNA levels of the DA-induced early genes Nur77 and c-fos were elevated as after cocaine induction. Furthermore, in vivo challenge of the DA system by potassium-evoked depolarization revealed less DA release in both striatal areas. This study demonstrates that absence of VGLUT2 in DA neurons leads to perturbations of reward consumption as well as reward-associated memory, features of particular relevance for addictive-like behavior.
    Journal of Neuroscience 08/2011; 31(35):12593-603. · 6.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recent data indicate that 'classical' neurotransmitters can also act as co-transmitters. This notion has been strengthened by the demonstration that three vesicular glutamate transporters (vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1), VGLUT2 and VGLUT3) are present in central monoamine, acetylcholine and GABA neurons, as well as in primarily glutamatergic neurons. Thus, intriguing questions are raised about the morphological and functional organization of neuronal systems endowed with such a dual signalling capacity. In addition to glutamate co-release, vesicular synergy - a process leading to enhanced packaging of the 'primary' transmitter - is increasingly recognized as a major property of the glutamatergic co-phenotype. The behavioural relevance of this co-phenotype is presently the focus of considerable interest.
    Nature Reviews Neuroscience 04/2011; 12(4):204-16. · 31.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Clinical evidence suggests that febrile status epilepticus (SE) in children can lead to acute hippocampal injury and subsequent temporal lobe epilepsy. The contribution of febrile SE to the mechanisms underlying temporal lobe epilepsy are however poorly understood. A rat model of temporal lobe epilepsy following hyperthermic SE was previously established in our laboratory, wherein a focal cortical lesion induced at postnatal day 1 (P1), followed by a hyperthermic SE (more than 30 min) at P10, leads to hippocampal atrophy at P22 (dual pathology model) and spontaneous recurrent seizures (SRS) with mild visuospatial memory deficits in adult rats. The goal of this study was to identify the long term electrophysiological, anatomical and molecular changes in this model. Following hyperthermic SE, all cortically lesioned pups developed progressive SRS as adults, characterized by the onset of highly rhythmic activity in the hippocampus. A reduction of hippocampal volume on the side of the lesion preceded the SRS and was associated with a loss of hippocampal neurons, a marked decrease in pyramidal cell spine density, an increase in the hippocampal levels of NMDA receptor NR2A subunit, but no significant change in GABA receptors. These findings suggest that febrile SE in the abnormal brain leads to hippocampal injury that is followed by progressive network reorganization and molecular changes that contribute to the epileptogenesis as well as the observed memory deficits.
    Neurobiology of Disease 03/2011; 43(2):312-21. · 5.62 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Striatal serotonin projections have been implicated in levodopa-induced dyskinesia by providing an unregulated source of dopamine release. We set out to determine whether these projections are affected by levodopa treatment in a way that would favor the occurrence of dyskinesia. As an index of terminal serotonin innervation density, we measured radioligand binding to the plasma membrane serotonin transporter (SERT) in levodopa-treated dyskinetic and nondyskinetic subjects, using brain tissue from both rat and monkey models of Parkinson disease as well as parkinsonian patients. In addition, striatal tissue from dyskinetic rats was used for morphological and ultrastructural analyses of serotonin axon terminals, and for studies of stimulated [³H]dopamine release. Across all conditions examined, striatal levels of SERT radioligand binding were significantly elevated in dyskinetic subjects compared to nondyskinetic cases. In the rat striatum, dyskinesiogenic levodopa treatment had induced sprouting of serotonin axon varicosities having a relatively high synaptic incidence. This response was associated with increased depolarization-induced [³H]dopamine release and with a stronger release potentiation by brain-derived neurotrophic factor. This study provides the first evidence that L-dopa treatment induces sprouting of serotonin axon terminals, with an increased incidence of synaptic contacts, and a larger activity-dependent potentiation of dopamine release in the dopamine-denervated striatum. Treatment-induced plasticity of the serotonin innervation may therefore represent a previously unappreciated cause of altered dopamine dynamics. These results are important for understanding the mechanisms by which L-dopa pharmacotherapy predisposes to dyskinesia, and for defining biomarkers of motor complications in Parkinsons disease.
    Annals of Neurology 09/2010; 68(5):619-28. · 11.91 Impact Factor
  • Martin Parent, Marie-Josée Wallman, Laurent Descarries
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    ABSTRACT: The main purpose of this light and electron microscopic immunocytochemical study was to characterize and compare the serotonin (5-HT) innervation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) in rats and squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus) following labeling with an antibody against the 5-HT transporter (SERT). Unbiased counts of SERT+ axon varicosities revealed an average density of 5-HT innervation higher in monkeys (1.52 x 10(6) varicosities/mm3) than rats (1.17 x 10(6)), particularly in the anterior half of the nucleus (1.70 x 10(6)). As measured by electron microscopy, SERT+ axon varicosity profiles in the STN of both species were smaller than unlabeled profiles. The number of SERT+ profiles displaying a synaptic junction indicated that, in both rat and monkey STN, approximately half of 5-HT axon varicosities were asynaptic. In monkeys, all synaptic junctions made by SERT+ varicosities were asymmetrical, as opposed to only 77% in rats. Despite the higher density of 5-HT innervation in the anterior half of monkey STN, the ultrastructural features of its SERT+ varicosities, including synaptic incidence, did not significantly differ from those in its posterior half. These findings suggest that, throughout the rat and monkey STN, 5-HT afferents may exert their influence via both synaptic delivery and diffusion of 5-HT, and that an ambient level of 5-HT maintained in STN by these two modes of transmission might also modulate neuronal activity and influence motor behavior. A better understanding of the factors governing the complex interplay between these signaling processes would greatly improve our knowledge of the physiopathology of the STN.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 03/2010; 31(7):1233-42. · 3.67 Impact Factor
  • Laurent Descarries, Mustapha Riad, Martin Parent
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    ABSTRACT: In the past 40 years, cytochemical, radioautographic and imunocytochemical methods have been applied to identify serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) neurons at the electron-microscopic level, providing a wealth of information on their ultrastructural features in many parts of the mammalian central nervous system. This chapter summarizes much of these data, with an emphasis on the fine structural characteristics of 5-HT nerve terminals, particularly when they have been described in relation to chemically, physiologically or hodologically identified targets. Results obtained in various experimental models and during postnatal development have been included, as they provide insights into the morphological plasticity of the 5-HT system.
    Handbook of Behavioral Neuroscience 01/2010;
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    ABSTRACT: Coexpression of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) mRNAs in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and colocalization of these proteins in axon terminals of the nucleus accumbens (nAcb) have recently been demonstrated in immature (15-day-old) rat. After neonatal 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion, the proportion of VTA neurons expressing both mRNAs and of nAcb terminals displaying the two proteins was enhanced. To determine the fate of this dual phenotype in adults, double in situ hybridization and dual immunolabeling for TH and VGLUT2 were performed in 90-day-old rats subjected or not to the neonatal 6-OHDA lesion. Very few neurons expressed both mRNAs in the VTA and substantia nigra (SN) of P90 rats, even after neonatal 6-OHDA. Dually immunolabeled terminals were no longer found in the nAcb of normal P90 rats and were exceedingly rare in the nAcb of 6-OHDA-lesioned rats, although they had represented 28% and 37% of all TH terminals at P15. Similarly, 17% of all TH terminals in normal neostriatum and 46% in the dopamine neoinnervation of SN in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats were also immunoreactive for VGLUT2 at P15, but none at P90. In these three regions, all dually labeled terminals made synapse, in contradistinction to those immunolabeled for only TH or VGLUT2 at P15. These results suggest a regression of the VGLUT2 phenotype of dopamine neurons with age, following normal development, lesion, or sprouting after injury, and a role for glutamate in the establishment of synapses by these neurons.
    The Journal of Comparative Neurology 12/2009; 517(6):873-91. · 3.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Substance P (SP) modulates serotonin neurotransmission via neurokinin-1 receptors (NK1rs), and exerts regulatory effects on mood through habenular afferents to the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN). We have previously demonstrated that, in the caudal DRN of rat, some serotonin neurons are endowed with NK1rs that are mostly cytoplasmic, whereas these receptors are mostly membrane bound in non-serotonin neurons. Here, we first examined by double-labeling immunocytochemistry the relationships between SP axon terminals and these two categories of DRN neurons. Almost half of the SP terminals were synaptic and many were in close contact with serotonin dendrites, but never with non-serotonin dendrites. In additional double-immunolabeling experiments, most if not all dendrites bearing membranous NK1rs appeared to be GABAergic. Treatment with the selective neurokinin-1 antagonist RP67580 modified the subcellular distribution of NK1rs in serotonin neurons. At 1 h after administration of a single dose, the receptor distribution was unchanged in both dendritic types but, after daily administration for 7 or 21 days, the plasma membrane and cytoplasmic density of NK1rs were increased in serotonin dendrites, without any change in non-serotonin dendrites. These treatments also increased NK1r gene expression in the caudal DRN. Lastly, a marked increase in the membrane (but not cytoplasmic) density of NK1rs was measured in serotonin dendrites after bilateral habenular lesion. These results suggest that the trafficking of NK1rs represents a cellular mechanism in control of the modulation of serotonin neuron activity by SP in DRN.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 06/2009; 29(12):2303-14. · 3.67 Impact Factor
  • Michael Ligorio, Laurent Descarries, Richard A. Warren
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    ABSTRACT: Cholinergic interneurons are the only known source of acetylcholine in the rat nucleus accumbens (nAcb); yet there is little anatomical data about their mode of innervation and the origin of their excitatory drive. We characterized the cholinergic and thalamic innervations of nAcb with choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) immunocytochemistry and anterograde transport of Phaseolus vulgaris-leucoagglutinin (PHA-L) from the midline/intralaminar/paraventricular thalamic nuclei. The use of a monoclonal ChAT antiserum against whole rat ChAT protein allowed for an optimal visualization of the small dendritic branches and fine varicose axons of cholinergic interneurons. PHA-L-labeled thalamic afferents were heterogeneously distributed throughout the core and shell regions of nAcb, overlapping regionally with cholinergic somata and dendrites. At the ultrastructural level, several hundred single-section profiles of PHA-L and ChAT-labeled axon terminals were analyzed for morphology, synaptic frequency, and the nature of their synaptic targets. The cholinergic profiles were small and apposed to various neuronal elements, but rarely exhibited a synaptic membrane specialization (5% in single ultrathin sections). Stereological extrapolation indicated that less than 15% of these cholinergic varicosities were synaptic. The PHA-L-labeled profiles were comparatively large and often synaptic (37% in single ultrathin sections), making asymmetrical contacts primarily with dendritic spines (>90%). Stereological extrapolation indicated that all PHA-L-labeled terminals were synaptic. In double-labeled material, some PHA-L-labeled terminals were directly apposed to ChAT-labeled somata or dendrites, but synapses were never seen between the two types of elements. These observations demonstrate that the cholinergic innervation of rat nAcb is largely asynaptic. They confirm that the afferents from midline/intralaminar/paraventricular thalamic nuclei to rat nAcb synapse mostly on dendritic spines, presumably of medium spiny neurons, and suggest that the excitatory drive of nAcb cholinergic interneurons from thalamus is indirect, either via substance P release from recurrent collaterals of medium spiny neurons and/or by extrasynaptic diffusion of glutamate.
    Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy 01/2009; · 2.52 Impact Factor
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    Martin Parent, Laurent Descarries
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    ABSTRACT: The acetylcholine (ACh) innervation of thalamus arises mainly from the brainstem pedunculopontine and laterodorsal tegmental nuclei. By using immunocytochemistry with a monoclonal antibody against whole rat choline acetyltransferase (ChAT), we quantified the distribution and characterized the ultrastructural features of these nerve terminals (axon varicosities) in the dorsolateral geniculate (DLG), parafascicular (PF), and reticular thalamic (Rt) nuclei of adult rat. The regional density of ACh innervation was the highest in PF (2.1 x 10(6) varicosities/mm(3)), followed by Rt (1.7 x 10(6)) and DLG (1.3 x 10(6)). In single thin sections, ChAT-immunostained varicosity profiles appeared comparable in shape and content in the three nuclei, but significantly larger in PF than in DLG and Rt. The number of these profiles displaying a synaptic junction was also much higher in PF than in DLG and Rt, indicating that all ChAT-immunostained varicosities in PF were synaptic, but only 39% in DLG and 33% in Rt. The hypothesis that glutamate corelease might account for the maintenance of the entirely synaptic ACh innervation in PF was refuted by the lack of colocalization of ChAT and vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2) in PF axon varicosities after dual immunolabeling. These data suggest that diffuse as well as synaptic transmission convey modulatory effects of the ACh input from brainstem to DLG and Rt during waking. In contrast, the entirely synaptic ACh input to PF should allow for a direct relaying of the information from brainstem, affecting basal ganglia function as well as perceptual awareness, including attention and pain perception.
    The Journal of Comparative Neurology 11/2008; 511(5):678-91. · 3.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Earlier studies have shown that positron emission tomography (PET) imaging with the radioligand [(18)F]MPPF allows for measuring the binding potential of serotonin 5-hydroxytryptamine(1A) (5-HT(1A)) receptors in different regions of animal and human brain, including that of 5-HT(1A) autoreceptors in the raphe nuclei. In the present study, we sought to determine if such data could be obtained in rat, with a microPET (R4, Concorde Microsystems). Scans from isoflurane-anaesthetised rats (n = 18, including six test-retest) were co-registered with magnetic resonance imaging data, and binding potential, blood to plasma ratio and radiotracer efflux were estimated according to a simplified reference tissue model. Values of binding potential for hippocampus (1.2), entorhinal cortex (1.1), septum (1.1), medial prefrontal cortex (1.0), amygdala (0.8), raphe nuclei (0.6), paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus (0.5) and raphe obscurus (0.5) were comparable to those previously measured with PET in cats, non-human primates or humans. Test-retest variability was in the order of 10% in the larger brain regions (hippocampus, medial prefrontal and entorhinal cortex) and less than 20% in small nuclei such as the septum and the paraventricular hypothalamic, basolateral amygdaloid and raphe nuclei. MicroPET brain imaging of 5-HT(1A) receptors with [(18)F]MPPF thus represents a promising avenue for investigating 5-HT(1A) receptor function in rat.
    European Journal of Nuclear Medicine 09/2008; 36(1):53-62. · 4.53 Impact Factor
  • Laurent Descarries, Virginia Cornea-Hébert, Mustapha Riad
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    ABSTRACT: Immunocytochemistry allows for a precise localization of neurotransmitter receptors in tissues and cells. This review summarizes much of the available data on the cellular and subcellular distribution of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) receptors in the mammalian central nervous system. Among fourteen 5-HT receptor types, all cloned and sequenced, only a few have yet been amenable to detailed immunocytochemical visualization, not only at the light microscopic but particularly at the electron microscopic level. The 5-HT1A and 5-HT2A receptors have been the most thoroughly investigated and provide a meaningful demonstration of the wealth of information to be gained from this methodological approach, not only in terms of anatomical and cytological localization, and thus physiological role and eventual implication in health and disease, but also of functional properties and drug effects.
    08/2008: pages 277-317;
  • A R Ase, T A Reader, R Hen, L Descarries
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    ABSTRACT: The serotonin1B receptor knockout (5-HT1B KO) mouse is a valuable animal model of addiction to psychostimulants. We previously found selective increases in dopamine (DA) turnover in the nucleus accumbens of these mice, in addition to several changes in their central serotonin system. Here, we searched for further DA adaptations by measuring D1 and D2 receptor as well DA plasma membrane transporter (DAT) sites by ligand binding autoradiography, and G-protein coupling to D1 and D2 receptors by [35S]GTP gamma S autoradiography. Except for a slight increase in the lateral septum, D1 receptor binding did not differ from wild-type in twenty-one other neocortical, limbic or basal ganglia regions examined in the KO. Nor were there changes in D1 agonist-stimulated G-protein coupling in any of these regions, including the lateral septum. Increases in D2 binding sites, presumably involving GABAergic projection neurons, were measured in the nucleus accumbens, olfactory tubercle and ventral tegmental area of the 5-HT1B KO. However, no activation of the efficacy of D2 receptor coupling to G-protein could be measured in these and other brain regions. Binding to DAT was unchanged throughout brain. Because of their implication in cocaine addiction, the functionality of mu-opioid and GABAB receptors was also assessed by [35S]GTP gamma S autoradiography. 5-HT1B KO showed selective decreases in G-protein coupling to mu-opioid receptors in the paraventricular thalamic nucleus, and to GABAB receptors in the basolateral nucleus of amygdala. It is likely that these latter changes underlie some aspects of the addictive behavior of the 5-HT1B KO mouse.
    Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy 08/2008; 35(4):356-63. · 2.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In rats subjected to a focal cortical lesion soon after birth, hyperthermia at P10 induces a prolonged epileptic seizure, often followed by temporal lobe epilepsy in the adult. To determine whether brain damage and notably hippocampal atrophy occur early on in this model, whole brain as well as hemispheric, cortical, subcortical and hippocampal volumes was measured in non-lesioned and lesioned rat pups, 2 days (P12) and 12 days (P22) after the hyperthermic seizure. All pups with a cortical lesion showed reductions in whole brain and in ipsilateral hemispheric, cortical and hippocampal volumes at P12, which persisted at P22 in pups having also sustained a prolonged hyperthermic seizure at P10. Limiting the duration of the seizure with Diazepam prevented the hippocampal atrophy. Thus, a prolonged hyperthermic seizure in immature brain with a subtle neocortical lesion impairs normal brain development, and the duration of the seizure appears to be a key factor in generating hippocampal atrophy.
    Neurobiology of Disease 08/2008; 32(1):176-82. · 5.62 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

7k Citations
569.77 Total Impact Points


  • 2012
    • University of Ottawa
      Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  • 1974–2012
    • Université de Montréal
      • • Department of Pathology and Cell Biology
      • • Department of Physiology
      • • Faculty of Medicine
      • • Department of Stomatology
      • • Department of Radiology, Radiation Oncology and Nuclear Medicine
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 1986–2008
    • McGill University
      • • Department of Psychiatry
      • • Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 1982–2005
    • Université du Québec à Montréal
      • • Department of Psychology
      • • Department of Sociology
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 2004
    • Claude Bernard University Lyon 1
      • Laboratoire de neuropsychopharmacologie
      Villeurbanne, Rhone-Alpes, France
  • 1998
    • East Tennessee State University
      Johnson City, Tennessee, United States
  • 1994–1997
    • Hôpital Notre-Dame
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 1995–1996
    • Universidad Autónoma de Madrid
      • Facultad de Medicina
      Madrid, Madrid, Spain
    • CERMEP
      Rhône-Alpes, France
  • 1988–1992
    • Université du Québec
      Québec, Quebec, Canada
  • 1991
    • Hôpital Louis-H. Lafontaine
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada