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Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2010 Aug 16;34(6):895-902. doi: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2010.04.013. Epub 2010 Apr 21.

d-serine enhances extinction of auditory cued fear conditioning via ERK1/2 phosphorylation in mice.

Author information

1
Department of Integrative Neurophysiology, Chiba University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-8-1 Inohana, Chiba 260-8670, Japan.

Abstract

Several lines of evidence suggest that the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor plays a significant role in fear conditioning and extinction. However, our knowledge of the role of D-serine, an endogenous ligand for the glycine site of the NMDA receptor, in fear extinction is quite limited compared to that of D-cycloserine, an exogenous partial agonist for the same site. In the current study, we examined the effects of D-serine on fear extinction and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) in the hippocampus, basolateral amygdala (BLA), and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) during the process of fear extinction. Systemic administrations of D-serine (2.7 g/kg, i.p.) with or without the ERK inhibitor SL327 (30 mg/kg, i.p.) to C57BL/6J mice were performed before fear extinction in a cued fear conditioning and extinction paradigm. Cytosolic and nuclear ERK 1/2 phosphorylation in the hippocampus, BLA, and mPFC were measured 1h after extinction (E1h), 24h after extinction (E24h), and 1h after recall (R1h) by Western blotting. We found that D-serine enhanced the extinction of fear memory, and the effects of D-serine were reduced by the ERK phosphorylation inhibitor SL327. The Western blot analyses showed that D-serine significantly increased cytosolic ERK 2 phosphorylation at E1h in the hippocampus and cytosolic ERK 1/2 phosphorylation at R1h in the BLA. The present study suggested that D-serine might enhance fear extinction through NMDA receptor-induced ERK signaling in mice, and that D-serine has potential clinical importance for the treatment of anxiety disorders.

PMID:
20416352
DOI:
10.1016/j.pnpbp.2010.04.013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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