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Anhedonia is defined as a diminished ability to obtain pleasure from otherwise positive stimuli. Anxiety and mood disorders have been previously associated with dysregulation of the reward system, with anhedonia as a core element of major depressive disorder (MDD). The aim of the present study was to investigate whether stress-induced anhedonia could be prevented by treatments with escitalopram or novel herbal treatment (NHT) in an animal model of depression. Unpredictable chronic mild stress (UCMS) was administered for 4 weeks on ICR outbred mice. Following stress exposure, animals were randomly assigned to pharmacological treatment groups (i.e., saline, escitalopram or NHT). Treatments were delivered for 3 weeks. Hedonic tone was examined via ethanol and sucrose preferences. Biological indices pertinent to MDD and anhedonia were assessed: namely, hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and striatal dopamine receptor D2 (Drd2) mRNA expression levels. The results indicate that the UCMS-induced reductions in ethanol or sucrose preferences were normalized by escitalopram or NHT. This implies a resemblance between sucrose and ethanol in their hedonic-eliciting property. On a neurobiological aspect, UCMS-induced reduction in hippocampal BDNF levels was normalized by escitalopram or NHT, while UCMS-induced reduction in striatal Drd2 mRNA levels was normalized solely by NHT. The results accentuate the association of stress and anhedonia, and pinpoint a distinct effect for NHT on striatal Drd2 expression.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: PloS one
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A c-jun amino-terminal kinase that is found predominantly within NEURONS of the BRAIN, suggesting a role in stress-induced neuronal APOPTOSIS. Several isoforms of the protein with molecular sizes of 47 kDa and 52 kDa exist due to multiple ALTERNATIVE SPLICING.
A class of traumatic stress disorders that is characterized by the significant dissociative states seen immediately after overwhelming trauma. By definition it cannot last longer than 1 month, if it persists, a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (STRESS DISORDERS, POST-TRAUMATIC) is more appropriate.
An inbred strain of mouse that is used as a general purpose research strain, for therapeutic drug testing, and for the genetic analysis of CARCINOGEN-induced COLON CANCER.
Inability to experience pleasure due to impairment or dysfunction of normal psychological and neurobiological mechanisms. It is a symptom of many PSYCHOTIC DISORDERS (e.g., DEPRESSIVE DISORDER, MAJOR; and SCHIZOPHRENIA).
A genus of the subfamily SIGMODONTINAE consisting of 49 species. Two of these are widely used in medical research. They are P. leucopus, or the white-footed mouse, and P. maniculatus, or the deer mouse.
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