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Neuronal nitric oxide synthase and affective disorders.


ABSTRACT: Affective disorders including major depressive disorder (MDD), bipolar disorder (BPD), and general anxiety affect more than 10% of population in the world. Notably, neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS), a downstream signal molecule of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) activation, is abundant in many regions of the brain such as the prefrontal cortex (PFC), hippocampus, amygdala, dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), locus coeruleus (LC), and hypothalamus, which are closely associated with the pathophysiology of affective disorders. Decreased levels of the neurotransmitters including 5-hydroxytryptamine or serotonin (5-HT), noradrenalin (NA), and dopamine (DA) as well as hyperactivity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis are common pathological changes of MDD, BPD, and anxiety. Increasing data suggests that nNOS in the hippocampus play a crucial role in the etiology of MDD whereas nNOS-related dysregulation of the nitrergic system in the LC is closely associated with the pathogenesis of BPD. Moreover, hippocampal nNOS is implicated in the role of serotonin receptor 1?A (5-HTR1?A) in modulating anxiety behaviors. Augment of nNOS and its carboxy-terminal PDZ ligand (CAPON) complex mediate stress-induced anxiety and disrupting the nNOS-CAPON interaction by small molecular drug generates anxiolytic effect. To date, however, the function of nNOS in affective disorders is not well reviewed. Here, we summarize works about nNOS and its signal mechanisms implicated in the pathophysiology of affective disorders. On the basis of this review, it is suggested that future research should more fully focus on the role of nNOS in the pathomechanism and treatment of affective disorders.

SUBMITTER: Zhou QG 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6303682 | BioStudies | 2018-01-01T00:00:00Z

SECONDARY ACCESSION(S): rs41279104

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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