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(1/14614) High-linoleate and high-alpha-linolenate diets affect learning ability and natural behavior in SAMR1 mice.

Semipurified diets incorporating either perilla oil [high in alpha-linolenate, 18:3(n-3)] or safflower oil [high in linoleate, 18:2(n-6)] were fed to senescence-resistant SAMR1 mouse dams and their pups. Male offspring at 15 mo were examined using behavioral tests. In the open field test, locomotor activity during a 5-min period was significantly higher in the safflower oil group than in the perilla oil group. Observations of the circadian rhythm (48 h) of spontaneous motor activity indicated that the safflower oil group was more active than the perilla oil group during the first and second dark periods. The total number of responses to positive and negative stimuli was higher in the safflower oil group than in the perilla oil group in the light and dark discrimination learning test, but the correct response ratio was lower in the safflower oil group. The difference in the (n-6)/(n-3) ratios of the diets reflected the proportions of (n-6) polyunsaturated fatty acids, rather than those of (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids in the brain total fatty acids, and in the proportions of (n-6) and (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids in the total polyunsaturated fatty acids of the brain phospholipids. These results suggest that in SAMR1 mice, the dietary alpha-linolenate/linoleate balance affects the (n-6)/(n-3) ratio of brain phospholipids, and this may modify emotional reactivity and learning ability.  (+info)

(2/14614) Viral gene delivery selectively restores feeding and prevents lethality of dopamine-deficient mice.

Dopamine-deficient mice (DA-/- ), lacking tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in dopaminergic neurons, become hypoactive and aphagic and die by 4 weeks of age. They are rescued by daily treatment with L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA); each dose restores dopamine (DA) and feeding for less than 24 hr. Recombinant adeno-associated viruses expressing human TH or GTP cyclohydrolase 1 (GTPCH1) were injected into the striatum of DA-/- mice. Bilateral coinjection of both viruses restored feeding behavior for several months. However, locomotor activity and coordination were partially improved. A virus expressing only TH was less effective, and one expressing GTPCH1 alone was ineffective. TH immunoreactivity and DA were detected in the ventral striatum and adjacent posterior regions of rescued mice, suggesting that these regions mediate a critical DA-dependent aspect of feeding behavior.  (+info)

(3/14614) Modifications of local cerebral metabolic rates for glucose and motor behavior in rats with unilateral lesion of the subthalamic nucleus.

Inactivation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) has attracted interest as a therapeutic tool in Parkinson's disease. The functional consequences of the inactivation, however, are uncertain. In this study definition of the pattern of changes of cerebral functional activity associated with lesion of the STN and dopaminergic stimulation, by using the [14C]deoxyglucose method, was sought. Six or 7 days following unilateral lesion of the STN, the animals were divided into two groups: One group (n = 10) was administered apomorphine (1 mg/kg) subcutaneously; the second group (n = 10) received saline. The [14C]deoxyglucose procedure was initiated 10 minutes following the drug or saline injection. The results show that systemic administration of apomorphine to rats with unilateral lesion of the STN causes ipsiversive rotational behavior and asymmetries of glucose utilization of defined brain areas, including the substantia nigra reticulata, globus pallidus, and entopeduncular nucleus. These nuclei are the main targets of the subthalamic excitatory projections. Lesion of the nucleus per se (without challenge with apomorphine) has no significant consequences on glucose utilization. The findings indicate that the STN is involved in the activation of the basal ganglia output nuclei induced by systemic dopaminergic stimulation.  (+info)

(4/14614) Behavioral, toxic, and neurochemical effects of sydnocarb, a novel psychomotor stimulant: comparisons with methamphetamine.

Sydnocarb (3-(beta-phenylisopropyl)-N-phenylcarbamoylsydnonimine) is a psychostimulant in clinical practice in Russia as a primary and adjunct therapy for a host of psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia and depression. It has been described as a stimulant with an addiction liability and toxicity less than that of amphetamines. The present study undertook to evaluate the psychomotor stimulant effects of sydnocarb in comparison to those of methamphetamine. Sydnocarb increased locomotor activity of mice with reduced potency (approximately 10-fold) and efficacy compared with methamphetamine. Sydnocarb blocked the locomotor depressant effects of haloperidol at doses that were inactive when given alone. The locomotor stimulant effects of both methamphetamine and sydnocarb were dose-dependently blocked by the dopamine D1 and D2 antagonists SCH 39166 and spiperone, respectively; blockade generally occurred at doses of the antagonists that did not depress locomotor activity when given alone. In mice trained to discriminate methamphetamine from saline, sydnocarb fully substituted for methamphetamine with a 9-fold lower potency. When substituted for methamphetamine under self-administration experiments in rats, 10-fold higher concentrations of sydnocarb maintained responding by its i.v. presentation. Sydnocarb engendered stereotypy in high doses with approximately a 2-fold lower potency than methamphetamine. However, sydnocarb was much less efficacious than methamphetamine in inducing stereotyped behavior. Both sydnocarb and methamphetamine increased dialysate levels of dopamine in mouse striatum; however, the potency and efficacy of sydnocarb was less than methamphetamine. The convulsive effects of cocaine were significantly enhanced by the coadministration of nontoxic doses of methamphetamine but not of sydnocarb. Taken together, the present findings indicate that sydnocarb has psychomotor stimulant effects that are shared by methamphetamine while demonstrating a reduced behavioral toxicity.  (+info)

(5/14614) Improvement by nefiracetam of beta-amyloid-(1-42)-induced learning and memory impairments in rats.

1. We have previously demonstrated that continuous i.c.v. infusion of amyloid beta-peptide (A beta), the major constituent of senile plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease, results in learning and memory deficits in rats. 2. In the present study, we investigated the effects of nefiracetam [N-(2,6-dimethylphenyl)-2-(2-oxo-1-pyrrolidinyl) acetamide, DM-9384] on A beta-(1-42)-induced learning and memory deficits in rats. 3. In the A beta-(1-42)-infused rats, spontaneous alternation behaviour in a Y-maze task, spatial reference and working memory in a water maze task, and retention of passive avoidance learning were significantly impaired as compared with A beta-(40-1)-infused control rats. 4. Nefiracetam, at a dose range of 1-10 mg kg(-1), improved learning and memory deficits in the A beta-(1-42)-infused rats when it was administered p.o. 1 h before the behavioural tests. 5. Nefiracetam at a dose of 3 mg kg(-1) p.o. increased the activity of choline acetyltransferase in the hippocampus of A beta-(1-42)-infused rats. 6. Nefiracetam increased dopamine turnover in the cerebral cortex and striatum of A beta-(1-42)-infused rats, but failed to affect the noradrenaline, serotonin and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid content. 7. These results suggest that nefiracetam may be useful for the treatment of patients with Alzheimer's disease.  (+info)

(6/14614) In vitro analog of operant conditioning in aplysia. II. Modifications of the functional dynamics of an identified neuron contribute to motor pattern selection.

Previously, an analog of operant conditioning was developed using the buccal ganglia of Aplysia, the probabilistic occurrences of a specific motor pattern (i.e., pattern I), a contingent reinforcement (i.e., stimulation of the esophageal nerve), and monotonic stimulation of a peripheral nerve (i.e., n.2,3). This analog expressed a key feature of operant conditioning (i.e., selective enhancement of the probability of occurrence of a designated motor pattern by contingent reinforcement). In addition, the training induced changes in the dynamical properties of neuron B51, an element of the buccal central pattern generator. To gain insights into the neuronal mechanisms that mediate features of operant conditioning, the present study identified a neuronal element that was critically involved in the selective enhancement of pattern I. We found that bursting activity in cell B51 contributed significantly to the expression of pattern I and that changes in the dynamical properties of this cell were associated with the selective enhancement of pattern I. These changes could be induced by an explicit association of reinforcement with random depolarization of B51. No stimulation of n.2,3 was required. These results indicate that the selection of a designated motor pattern by contingent reinforcement and the underlying neuronal plasticity resulted from the association of reinforcement with a component of central neuronal activity that contributes to a specific motor pattern. The sensory stimulus that allows for occurrences of different motor acts may not be critical for induction of plasticity that mediates the selection of a motor output by contingent reinforcement in operant conditioning.  (+info)

(7/14614) Dissociation in effects of lesions of the nucleus accumbens core and shell on appetitive pavlovian approach behavior and the potentiation of conditioned reinforcement and locomotor activity by D-amphetamine.

Dopamine release within the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) has been associated with both the rewarding and locomotor-stimulant effects of abused drugs. The functions of the NAcc core and shell were investigated in mediating amphetamine-potentiated conditioned reinforcement and locomotion. Rats were initially trained to associate a neutral stimulus (Pavlovian CS) with food reinforcement (US). After excitotoxic lesions that selectively destroyed either the NAcc core or shell, animals underwent additional CS-US training sessions and then were tested for the acquisition of a new instrumental response that produced the CS acting as a conditioned reinforcer (CR). Animals were infused intra-NAcc with D-amphetamine (0, 1, 3, 10, or 20 microg) before each session. Shell lesions affected neither Pavlovian nor instrumental conditioning but completely abolished the potentiative effect of intra-NAcc amphetamine on responding with CR. Core-lesioned animals were impaired during the Pavlovian retraining sessions but showed no deficit in the acquisition of responding with CR. However, the selectivity in stimulant-induced potentiation of the CR lever was reduced, as intra-NAcc amphetamine infusions dose-dependently increased responding on both the CR lever and a nonreinforced (control) lever. Shell lesions produced hypoactivity and attenuated amphetamine-induced activity. In contrast, core lesions resulted in hyperactivity and enhanced the locomotor-stimulating effect of amphetamine. These results indicate a functional dissociation of subregions of the NAcc; the shell is a critical site for stimulant effects underlying the enhancement of responding with CR and locomotion after intra-NAcc injections of amphetamine, whereas the core is implicated in mechanisms underlying the expression of CS-US associations.  (+info)

(8/14614) Regulation of myocardial blood flow by oxygen consumption is maintained in the failing heart during exercise.

The hemodynamic abnormalities and neurohumoral activation that accompany congestive heart failure (CHF) might be expected to impair the increase in coronary blood flow that occurs during exercise. This study was performed to determine the effects of CHF on myocardial oxygen consumption and coronary blood flow during exercise. Coronary blood flow was measured in chronically instrumented dogs at rest, during 2 stages of graded treadmill exercise under control conditions (n=10), and after the development of CHF produced by 3 weeks of rapid ventricular pacing (n=9). In the normal dogs, coronary blood flow increased during exercise in proportion to the increase in the heart rate x the left ventricular systolic blood pressure product (RPP). After the development of CHF, resting myocardial blood flow was 25% lower than normal (P<0.05). Myocardial blood flow increased during the first stage of exercise, but then failed to increase further during the second stage of exercise despite an additional increase in the RPP. Myocardial oxygen consumption during exercise was significantly lower in animals with CHF and paralleled coronary flow. Despite the lower values for coronary blood flow in animals with CHF, there was no evidence for myocardial ischemia. Thus, even during the second level of exercise when coronary flow failed to increase, myocardial lactate consumption continued and coronary venous pH did not fall. In addition, the failure of coronary flow to increase as the exercise level was increased from stage 1 to stage 2 was not associated with a further increase in myocardial oxygen extraction. Thus, cardiac failure was associated with decreased myocardial oxygen consumption and failure of oxygen consumption to increase with an increase in the level of exercise. This abnormality did not appear to result from inadequate oxygen availability, but more likely represented a reduction of myocardial oxygen usage with a secondary decrease in metabolic coronary vasodilation.  (+info)