HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Timing of chemical signal critical for normal emotional development

A signaling protein suspected of malfunctioning in anxiety and mood disorders plays a key role in the development of emotional behavior, report researchers funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. Mice lacking it in frontal brain circuits during an early critical period fail to develop normal reactions in anxiety-producing situations.

Rene Hen, Ph.D., Columbia University, and colleagues created mice that lacked the protein, which brain cells use to receive signals from the chemical messenger serotonin, by knocking-out the gene that codes for it. As adults, these "knockout" mice were slow to venture into -- or eat in -- unfamiliar environments. By selectively restoring, or "rescuing" certain populations of the receptor proteins, the researchers have now pinpointed when and where they enable the brain to cope with anxiety. Hen, Cornelius Gross, Ph.D., Xiaoxi Zhuang, Ph.D, and colleagues report on their discovery in the March 28, 2002 Nature.

Brain neurons communicate with each other by secreting messenger chemicals, such as serotonin, which cross the synaptic gulf between cells and bind to receptors on neighboring cell membranes. Medications that enhance such binding of serotonin to its receptor (serotonin selective reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs) are widely prescribed to treat anxiety and depression, suggesting that the receptor plays an important role in regulating these emotions.

Behavior of the animals in the study mimicked human anxiety. The mice bred not to express the gene that codes for the serotonin receptor (5-HT1A) moved around less than normal animals in open spaces, balked at entering elevated mazes, and were slower to begin eating in such novel environments. Yet, the researchers didn't know which of two populations of serotonin receptors -- one in the forebrain and another deep in the brainstem -- was responsible. To find out, they crossed the receptor knockout mice with mice engineered to turn receptor expres
'"/>

Contact: Jules Asher
NIMHpress@nih.gov
301-443-4536
NIH/National Institute of Mental Health
27-Mar-2002


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Vanderbilt Researcher: Human Brain Has Great Sense Of Timing
2. When To Reproduce? Its All In The Timing
3. DNA lends scientists a hand, revealing new chemical reactions
4. Grant advances biochemical engineering laboratory
5. Bullish chemical could repel yellow fever mosquitoes
6. Computer database being developed at Temple will allow for better inventory of chemicals
7. Cleaner water, more efficient electricity among UH chemical research
8. New world record magnet for chemical and biomedical research
9. Common chemicals morphing into potential toxins in Arctic
10. PTC Therapeutics researchers identify biochemical pathway important for modulating cell growth
11. Research finds lawn chemicals raise cancer risk in Scottish terriers

Post Your Comments:
(Date:4/24/2014)... world,s oceans play a crucial role in the ... ecosystems and atmosphere. Now scientists at Scripps Institution ... a leap forward in understanding the microscopic underpinnings ... dioxide to make new cells, a substantial portion ... sea as a buffet of edible molecules collectively ...
(Date:4/24/2014)... EAST LANSING, Mich. --- New research shows that cells ... than scientists originally thought. Even when missing critical components, ... in an alternative way. , In a study published ... of researchers at Michigan State University showed that cells ... duplicate their DNA. , "Our genetic information is stored ...
(Date:4/24/2014)... pleased to announce that it has assumed ownership of ... University of Wisconsin. , The Journal of ... journal that publishes papers on all aspects of the ... molecular to the ecological -- as well as their ... individuals and institutions, and it provides a reasonably priced ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Microscopic organism plays a big role in ocean carbon cycling, Scripps scientists discover 2Microscopic organism plays a big role in ocean carbon cycling, Scripps scientists discover 3Cell resiliency surprises scientists 2ESA to publish the Journal of Insect Science 2
(Date:1/14/2014)... January 14, 2014 In recent years, ... and methods in product development and promotion has led ... This mistrust, fueled by concerns about the insidious impact ... reports of spectacular fines to the world’s biggest pharmas ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... Global Record Systems, LLC, (GRS), a ... for patients, physicians, the biopharmaceutical industry, regulators, payers, ... signing of a three-year Research Collaboration Agreement (RCA) ... This initiative is designed to generate disruptive ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... Bellingham, Washington, USA, and Cardiff, UK (PRWEB) January 13, ... and photonics technology development leader with more than 20 ... international society for optics and photonics . Hainsey will ... “We are delighted to have Dr. Hainsey join SPIE ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... 14, 2014 During the 1600’s through the ... “The Doctor’s Plague.” In this time period, doctors did not ... at times, to the death of vulnerable patients. In the ... that they may be unwittingly transmitting herpes viruses to their ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The Sunshine Act: Necessary Regulation or Unnecessary Dysregulation? New Life Science Webinar Hosted by Xtalks and IRB Services 2The Sunshine Act: Necessary Regulation or Unnecessary Dysregulation? New Life Science Webinar Hosted by Xtalks and IRB Services 3Global Record Systems Announces Research Collaboration Agreement with FDA to Create a Novel “Big Data” Paradigm for Collection of Patient Safety and Outcomes Information 2Photonics R&D Leader Bob Hainsey Joins SPIE Technical Staff 2Study: Fatigued Medical Interns Infect Their Patients with Herpes Viruses; The CBCD Sees a Parallel with “The Doctor’s Plague” 2Study: Fatigued Medical Interns Infect Their Patients with Herpes Viruses; The CBCD Sees a Parallel with “The Doctor’s Plague” 3
Cached News: