Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/107306
Title: Toxoplasma gondii infection induces dendritic retraction in basolateral amygdala accompanied by reduced corticosterone secretion
Authors: Vyas, Ajai
Sapolsky, Robert M.
Mitra, Rupshi
Keywords: DRNTU::Science::Biological sciences
Issue Date: 2013
Source: Mitra, R., Sapolsky, R. M., & Vyas, A. (2013). Toxoplasma gondii infection induces dendritic retraction in basolateral amygdala accompanied by reduced corticosterone secretion. Disease models & mechanisms, 6(2), 516-520.
Series/Report no.: Disease models & mechanisms
Abstract: Pathological anxiety is thought to reflect a maladaptive state characterized by exaggerated fear. Naturally occurring perturbations that reduce fear can be crucial in the search for new treatments. The protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii invades rat brain and removes the fear that rats have of cat odors, a change believed to be parasitic manipulation of host behavior aimed at increasing parasite transmission. It is likely that mechanisms employed by T. gondii can be used as a heuristic tool to understand possible means of fear reduction in clinical settings. Male Long-Evans rats were infected with T. gondii and compared with sham-infected animals 8 weeks after infection. The amount of circulating plasma corticosterone and dendritic arborization of basolateral amygdala principal neurons were quantified. Previous studies have shown that corticosterone, acting within the basolateral amygdala, enhances the fear response to environmental stimuli. Here we show that T. gondii infection causes a dendritic retraction in basolateral amygdala neurons. Such dendritic retraction is accompanied by lower amounts of circulating corticosterone, both at baseline and when induced by an aversive cat odor. The concerted effects of parasitism on two pivotal physiological nodes of the fear response provide an animal model relevant to interactions between stress hormones and amygdalar plasticity.
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/107306
http://hdl.handle.net/10220/18095
DOI: 10.1242/dmm.009928
Rights: © 2013. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium provided that the original work is properly cited and all further distributions of the work or adaptation are subject to the same Creative Commons License terms.
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SBS Journal Articles

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