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Dev Psychobiol. 2016 Dec;58(8):1034-1042. doi: 10.1002/dev.21437. Epub 2016 Jun 13.

Early weaning impairs fear extinction and decreases brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression in the prefrontal cortex of adult male C57BL/6 mice.

Author information

1
Department of Animal Science and Biotechnology, Azabu University, Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan.

Abstract

We examined the developmental effects of early weaning on anxiety and the extinction of fear memory in male C57BL/6 mice. Early weaning led to increased freezing behaviors after fear conditioning via the foot-shock method both during extinction training and in a test of extinction recall, but did not induce significant changes in anxiety-like behavior. In addition, we found that the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein and mRNA transcripts for BDNF exon III in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) at the time of extinction recall were impaired in early-weaned mice compared to normally weaned mice. In light of consistent finding that early-weaned mice experience greater stress at weaning, these data suggest that early weaning of male C57BL/6 mice is valuable for studies of the pathogenesis of post-traumatic stress disorder.

KEYWORDS:

BDNF; PTSD; early weaning; fear extinction; mice

PMID:
27298086
DOI:
10.1002/dev.21437
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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