Selective Depletion of CREB in Serotonergic Neurons Affects the Upregulation of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Evoked by Chronic Fluoxetine Treatment.
ABSTRACT: Neurotrophic factors are regarded as crucial regulatory components in neuronal plasticity and are postulated to play an important role in depression pathology. The abundant expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in various brain structures seems to be of particular interest in this context, as downregulation of BDNF is postulated to be correlated with depression and its upregulation is often observed after chronic treatment with common antidepressants. It is well-known that BDNF expression is regulated by cyclic AMP response element-binding protein (CREB). In our previous study using mice lacking CREB in serotonergic neurons (Creb1TPH2CreERT2 mice), we showed that selective CREB ablation in these particular neuronal populations is crucial for drug-resistant phenotypes in the tail suspension test observed after fluoxetine administration in Creb1TPH2CreERT2 mice. The aim of this study was to investigate the molecular changes in the expression of neurotrophins in Creb1TPH2CreERT2 mice after chronic fluoxetine treatment, restricted to the brain structures implicated in depression pathology with profound serotonergic innervation including the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampus. Here, we show for the first time that BDNF upregulation observed after fluoxetine in the hippocampus or PFC might be dependent on the transcription factor CREB residing, not within these particular structures targeted by serotonergic projections, but exclusively in serotonergic neurons. This observation may shed new light on the neurotrophic hypothesis of depression, where the effects of BDNF observed after antidepressants in the hippocampus and other brain structures were rather thought to be regulated by CREB residing within the same brain structures. Overall, these results provide further evidence for the pivotal role of CREB in serotonergic neurons in maintaining mechanisms of antidepressant drug action by regulation of BDNF levels.
Project description:Fluoxetine, one of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants, has been thought to be effective for treating post-stroke depression (PSD). Recent work has shown that fluoxetine may exert an antidepressive effect through increasing the level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), but the underlying mechanism still remains unclear. In the present study, we successfully established the PSD model using male C57BL/6?J mice by photothrombosis of the left anterior cortex combined with isolatied-housing conditions. In the process, we confirmed that fluoxetine could improve the depression-like behaviors of PSD mice and upregulate the expression of BDNF in the hippocampus. However, depletion of BDNF by transfecting lentivirus-derived shBDNF in hippocampus suppressed the effect of fluoxetine. Furthermore, we demonstrated the epigenetic mechanisms involved in regulation of BDNF expression induced by fluoxetine. We found a statistically significant increase in DNA methylation at specific CpG sites (loci 2) of Bdnf promoter IV in the hippocampus of PSD mice. We also found that fluoxetine treatment could disassociate the MeCP2-CREB-Bdnf promoter IV complex via phosphorylation of MeCP2 at Ser421 by Protein Kinase A (PKA). Our research highlighted the importance of fluoxetine in regulating BDNF expression which could represent a potential strategy for preventing PSD.
Project description:<b>Background:</b> Early adverse life stress is an important dangerous factor in the development of psychiatric disorders, particularly depression. Available clinical antidepressant agents, such as fluoxetine, [a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)], are unsatisfactory because of their side effects. SiNiSan (SNS) is a classic Chinese medicine prescription regarded to disperse stagnated liver qi to relieve qi stagnation. Therefore, this study was designed to detect the effects and molecular mechanism of SNS treatment in rats subjected to maternal separation (MS). <b>Method:</b> Male neonatal Wistar rats were divided into six groups including control + ddH<sub>2</sub>O, MS + ddH<sub>2</sub>O, MS + fluoxetine (5 g/kg), MS + SNS -low dose (2.5 g/kg), MS + SNS -medium dose (5 g/kg), MS + SNS -high dose (10 g/kg). The volume of drugs and ddH2O in each group are according to the weight of rats every day (10 mL/kg). Each group comprised 16 pups with 8 young and 8 adult pups. Except for the control group, all MS groups were separated from their mothers for 4 h/day from 9:00 to 13:00 during postnatal days (PNDs) 1 to 21. After MS, the six groups were intragastrically administered with ddH2O, fluoxetine, and different doses of SNS until PND 28 (for young pups) and PND 56 (for adult pups). The pups were weighed every day, and depression-like behavior was assessed by sucrose preference test, open field test, and forced swimming test. Serotonin 1A (5-HT1A) receptor, phosphorylated protein kinase A (p-PKA) substrate, cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB), p-CREB and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the hippocampus were examined by Western blot, and <i>in situ</i> 5-HT1A receptor expression was measured by IHC. <b>Results:</b> Young and adult MS rats exhibited depression-like behavior. However, the depression-like behavior was ameliorated by SNS in both age groups. The levels of 5-HT1A receptor, p-CREB, and BDNF in the hippocampus were reduced in young and adult MS rats. SNS treatment significantly up-regulated the expression of 5-HT1A receptor, p-CREB, and BDNF in the hippocampus of adult MS rats. However, few significant effects on the protein expression were observed in the young MS rats. <b>Conclusion:</b> MS in infancy could develop depression-like behavior in young and adult. SNS treatment may perform antidepressant effects on young and adult MS rats through the BDNF/PKA/CREB pathway.
Project description:Treatment with the antihypertensive agent reserpine depletes monoamine levels, resulting in depression. In the present study, we evaluated the antidepressant effects of Gyejibokryeong-hwan (GBH), a traditional Korean medicine, in a mouse model of reserpine-induced depression. Mice were treated with reserpine (0.5 mg·kg-1, i.p.) or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS, i.p., normal) once daily for 10 days. GBH (50, 100, 300, and 500 mg·kg-1), PBS (normal, control), fluoxetine (FXT, 20 mg·kg-1), or amitriptyline (AMT, 30 mg·kg-1) was administered orally 1 h prior to reserpine treatment. Mouse behavior was examined in the forced swim test (FST), tail suspension test (TST), and open-field test (OFT) following completion of the treatment protocol. Administration of GBH reduced immobility time in the FST and TST and significantly increased the total distance traveled in the OFT. Plasma serotonin levels were significantly lower in control mice than in normal mice, although these decreases were significantly attenuated to a similar extent by treatment with GBH, FXT, or AMT. Reserpine-induced increases in plasma corticosterone were also attenuated by GBH treatment. Moreover, GBH attenuated reserpine-induced increases in interleukin- (IL-) 1?, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor- (TNF-) ? mRNA expression in the hippocampus. In addition, GBH mice exhibited increased levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and a higher ratio of phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein (p-CREB) to CREB (p-CREB/CREB) in the hippocampus. Our results indicated that GBH can ameliorate depressive-like behaviors, affect the concentration of mood-related hormones, and help to regulate immune/endocrine dysfunction in mice with reserpine-induced depression, likely via activation of the BDNF-CREB pathway. Taken together, these findings indicate that GBH may be effective in treating patients with depression.
Project description:Adolescence is a developmental stage in which the incidence of psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety disorders, peaks. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the main class of agents used to treat anxiety disorders. However, the impact of SSRIs on the developing brain during adolescence remains unknown. The authors assessed the impact of developmentally timed SSRI administration in a genetic mouse model displaying elevated anxiety-like behaviors.Knock-in mice containing a common human single-nucleotide polymorphism (Val66Met; rs6265) in brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a growth factor implicated in the mechanism of action of SSRIs, were studied based on their established phenotype of increased anxiety-like behavior. Timed administration of fluoxetine was delivered during one of three developmental periods (postnatal days 21-42, 40-61, or 60-81), spanning the transition from childhood to adulthood. Neurochemical and anxiety-like behavioral analyses were performed.We identified a "sensitive period" during periadolescence (postnatal days 21-42) in which developmentally timed fluoxetine administration rescued anxiety-like phenotypes in BDNF Val66Met mice in adulthood. Compared with littermate controls, BDNFMet/Met mice exhibited diminished maturation of serotonergic fibers projecting particularly to the prefrontal cortex, as well as decreased expression of the serotonergic trophic factor S100B in the dorsal raphe. Interestingly, deficient serotonergic innervation, as well as S100B levels, were rescued with fluoxetine administration during periadolescence.These findings suggest that SSRI administration during a "sensitive period" during periadolescence leads to long-lasting anxiolytic effects in a genetic mouse model of elevated anxiety-like behaviors. These persistent effects highlight the role of BDNF in the maturation of the serotonin system and the capacity to enhance its development through a pharmacological intervention.
Project description:Depression is a prevalent and debilitating psychiatric illnesses. However, currently prescribed antidepressant drugs are only efficacious in a limited group of patients. Studies on Balb/c mice suggested that histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibition may enhance the efficacy of the widely-prescribed antidepressant drug fluoxetine. This study shows that reducing HDAC activity in fluoxetine-treated Balb/c mice leads to robust antidepressant and anxiolytic effects. While reducing the activity of class I HDACs 1 and 3 led to antidepressant effects, additional class II HDAC inhibition was necessary to exert anxiolytic effects. In fluoxetine-treated mice, HDAC inhibitors increased enrichment of acetylated histone H4 protein and RNA polymerase II at promotor 3 of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf) gene and increased Bdnf transcription from this promotor. Reducing Bdnf-stimulated tropomyosin kinase B receptor activation in fluoxetine-treated mice with low HDAC activity abolished the behavioral effects of fluoxetine, suggesting that the HDAC-triggered epigenetic stimulation of Bdnf expression is critical for therapeutic efficacy.
Project description:Addition of low doses of the atypical antipsychotic drug brexpiprazole with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) could promote antidepressant effect in patients with major depressive disorder although the precise mechanisms underlying the action of the combination are unknown. Combination of low dose of brexpiprazole (0.1 mg/kg) and SSRI fluoxetine (10 mg/kg) could promote a rapid antidepressant effect in social defeat stress model although brexpiprazole or fluoxetine alone did not show antidepressant effect. Furthermore, the combination significantly improved alterations in the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) - TrkB signaling and dendritic spine density in the prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, and nucleus accumbens in the susceptible mice after social defeat stress. Interestingly, TrkB antagonist ANA-12 significantly blocked beneficial effects of combination of brexpiprazole and fluoxetine on depression-like phenotype. These results suggest that BDNF-TrkB signaling plays a role in the rapid antidepressant action of the combination of brexpiprazole and fluoxetine.
Project description:The altered expression and function of dopamine receptor D3 (D3R) in patients and animal models have been correlated with depression disease severity. However, the morphological alterations and biological effects of D3R in the brain after inflammation-induced depressive-like behavior remain elusive.In the present study, we ascertained the changes of D3R expression in the brain regions after depressive-like behavior induced by peripheral administration of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Protein levels of proinflammatory cytokines, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2)-cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB) signaling pathway after activation or inhibition of D3R in the brain of depressive mice were also investigated.LPS caused a significant reduction of D3R in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), and nucleus accumbens (NAc), which are areas related to the mesolimbic dopaminergic system. Pretreatment with pramipexole (PPX), a preferential D3R agonist, showed antidepressant effects on LPS-induced depression-like behavior through preventing changes in LPS-induced proinflammatory cytokines (tumour necrosis factor-?, interleukin-1?, and interleukin-6), BDNF, and ERK1/2-CREB signaling pathway in the VTA and NAc. In opposition, treatment with a D3R selective antagonist NGB 2904 alone made mice susceptible to depression-like effects and caused changes in accordance with the LPS-induced alterations in proinflammatory cytokines, BDNF, and the ERK1/2-CREB signaling pathway in the mPFC and NAc.These findings provide a relevant mechanism for D3R in LPS-induced depressive-like behavior via its mediation of proinflammatory cytokines and potential cross-effects between BDNF and the ERK1/2-CREB signaling pathway.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is being investigated as a treatment for major depression, but its mechanisms of action are still unknown. We have studied the effects of ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) stimulation in a chronic model of depression and assessed the involvement of the serotonergic system and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in a DBS response. METHODS:Rats were subjected to chronic unpredictable mild stress during 4 weeks. Decline in preference for sucrose solutions over water, an index suggested to reflect anhedonic-like behavior, was monitored on a weekly basis. The outcome of chronic vmPFC stimulation alone (8 hours/day for 2 weeks) or combined with serotonin-depleting lesions was characterized. BDNF levels were measured in the hippocampus. RESULTS:Stress induced a significant decrease in sucrose preference as well as hippocampal BDNF levels as compared with those recorded in control subjects. vmPFC stimulation completely reversed this behavioral deficit and partially increased BDNF levels. In contrast, DBS did not improve stress-induced anhedonic-like behavior in animals bearing serotonin-depleting raphe lesions with associated normal hippocampal BDNF levels. CONCLUSIONS:vmPFC stimulation was effective in a chronic model of depression. Our results suggest that the integrity of the serotonergic system is important for the anti-anhedonic-like effects of DBS but question a direct role of hippocampal BDNF.
Project description:It is well established that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) signaling pathway plays a key role in the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder (MDD) and in therapeutic mechanisms of antidepressants. We aim to identify genetic vairiants related to MDD susceptibility and antidepressant therapeutic response by using gene-based association analysis with genes related to the neurotrophic pathway. The present study investigated the role of genetic variants in the 10 neurotrophic-related genes (BDNF, NGFR, NTRK2, MTOR, VEGFA, S100A10, SERPINE1, ARHGAP33, GSK3B, CREB1) in MDD susceptibility through a case-control (455 MDD patients and 2,998 healthy controls) study and in antidepressant efficacy (n?=?455). Measures of antidepressant therapeutic efficacy were evaluated using the 21-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression. Our single-marker and gene-based analyses with ten genes related to the neurotrophic pathway identified 6 polymorphisms that reached a significant level (p-value?<?5.0?×?10-3) in both meta- and mega-analyses in antidepressant therapeutic response. One polymorphism was mapped to BDNF and 5 other polymorphisms were mapped to VEGFA. For case-control association study, we found that all of these reported polymorphisms and genes did not reach a suggestive level. The present study supported a role of BDNF and VEGFA variants in MDD therapeutic response.
Project description:The therapeutic activity of selective serotonin (5-HT) reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) relies on long-term adaptation at pre- and post-synaptic levels. The sustained administration of SSRIs increases the serotonergic neurotransmission in response to a functional desensitization of the inhibitory 5-HT1A autoreceptor in the dorsal raphe. At nerve terminal such as the hippocampus, the enhancement of 5-HT availability increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) synthesis and signaling, a major event in the stimulation of adult neurogenesis. In physiological conditions, BDNF would be expressed at functionally relevant levels in neurons. However, the recent observation that SSRIs upregulate BDNF mRNA in primary cultures of astrocytes strongly suggest that the therapeutic activity of antidepressant drugs might result from an increase in BDNF synthesis in this cell type. In this study, by overexpressing BDNF in astrocytes, we balanced the ratio between astrocytic and neuronal BDNF raising the possibility that such manipulation could positively reverberate on anxiolytic-/antidepressant-like activities in transfected mice. Our results indicate that BDNF overexpression in hippocampal astrocytes produced anxiolytic-/antidepressant-like activity in the novelty suppressed feeding in relation with the stimulation of hippocampal neurogenesis whereas it did not potentiate the effects of the SSRI fluoxetine on these parameters. Moreover, overexpressing BDNF revealed the anxiolytic-like activity of fluoxetine in the elevated plus maze while attenuating 5-HT neurotransmission in response to a blunted downregulation of the 5-HT1A autoreceptor. These results emphasize an original role of hippocampal astrocytes in the synthesis of BDNF, which can act through neurogenesis-dependent and -independent mechanisms to regulate different facets of anxiolytic-like responses.