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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2006 Jul;1071:542-6.

Developmental trauma is associated with behavioral hyperarousal, altered HPA axis activity, and decreased hippocampal neurotrophin expression in the adult rat.

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MRC Unit for Anxiety and Stress Related Disorders, Department of Medical Physiology, University of Stellenbosch, Tygerberg 7505, South Africa.


Effects of early-life trauma on adult behavioral responses, corticosterone (CORT) concentration, and levels of nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neutrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) in hippocampus and frontal cortex were investigated. Traumatized animals showed an increase in rearing in both the elevated plus maze and open field after adult restress, higher basal levels of CORT, lower levels of BDNF in dorsal hippocampus, and lower levels of NT-3 in dorsal and ventral hippocampus. Trauma-related behavioral hyperarousal and altered hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activity may be mediated by decreases in hippocampal neurotrophin expression.

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