Effects of Early Social Isolation on Anxiety Levels, Social Behaviors, and Neuroendocrine in Female ICR Mice
Accumulating evidence showed that early life stress induces significant behavioral and neurochemical changes in adulthood. However, the mechanisms of this process are not well understood. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), oxytocin (OT) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR) are implicated in the neuroadaptational response to stress. In this study, female ICR mice pups were subjected to repeated separation 3 h per day from postnatal day (PND) 3 to PND 21. On PND 60, the anxiety levels, social behaviors, serum corticosterone (CORT) and OT were assessed, while the expression of BDNF-, OT- and GR-immunoreactive (ir) neurons were also examined. The results showed that early social isolation enhanced anxiety levels and resulted in a reduction in locomotion and social behaviors compared to the control. Along with these changes, isolation treatment significantly up-regulated the levels of CORT in serum, and decreased the BDNF-ir and GR-ir expression in the CA1 and CA2/3 of the hippocampus, as well as OT-ir expression in the paraventricular nucleus and supraoptic nucleus. These findings demonstrated that early social isolation down-regulated the levels of BDNF, OT and GR, which were involved in mediating the stress system to affect emotion and social behaviors.
2017,36(1): 39-47 收稿日期：2016-09-05
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