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Psychopharmacology (Berl). 1996 Feb;123(4):346-52.

Increased 5-HT2C receptor responsiveness occurs on rearing rats in social isolation.

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  • 1Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Nottingham University, UK.

Abstract

To investigate whether isolation rearing alters 5-hydroxytryptamine2C (5-HT2C) receptors, the effect of the serotonin agonist m-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) was examined on elevated plus-maze behaviour, plasma corticosterone and brain 5-HT2C receptor protein levels in rats. There was no distinction between behaviour or corticosterone levels in drug-free isolates or socially housed rats exposed to the elevated plus-maze. The anxiogenic response to mCPP (decrease in open arm entry and time and an increase in stretch attend postures) on the elevated plus-maze was greater in isolation than in socially reared controls without any concomitant difference in the hypolocomotor effect of mCPP in the two groups. mCPP produced a greater elevation in plasma corticosterone in isolates than in group-housed controls. Hippocampal 5-HT2C receptor protein-like immunoreactive levels were significantly lower following mCPP than saline only in rats reared in isolation. These results indicate that increased 5-HT2C receptor responsiveness accompanies isolation-rearing and may contribute to the enhanced response to stress and the increased neophobia seen in this animal model of trait anxiety/depression. In isolation reared rats, rapid down-regulation of supersensitive 5-HT2C receptors may occur in the hippocampus following 5-HT agonist challenge.

PMID:
8867874
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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