Role of neurosecretory neurons and calcium signalling in depression and addictive behaviour: Assessment by in-vivo electrophysiology
Principal Investigator: Eliyahu Dremencov
Duration: October 2013 – October 2017
There is evidence that children of women which experienced stressful conditions during the pregnancy have higher risk to develop certain brain disorders, such as depression, schizophrenia, and autism. One of the common stressors experienced by pregnant women is acute infective illness. Little is known how prenatal infection influences the functioning of offspring brain. In this study, we plan to investigate the effect of prenatal immune challenge resembling infective illness, on maternal care behaviour of laboratory rats and on hippocampal neuronal activity of their pups. The immune challenge will be induced by the administration of bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Neuronal excitability will be examined in hippocampus, the structure related to depression, schizophrenia and autism, and compared between offsprings of rats treated with LPS and control rats. The results generated by this project will provide better understanding of pathophysiology of brain disorders triggered by prenatal stress.