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Phospholipase D-mediated hypersensitivity at central synapses is associated with abnormal behaviours and pain sensitivity in rats exposed to prenatal stress

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2706-2712
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Issue number11
Early online date7 Aug 2013
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013


Adverse events at critical stages of development can lead to lasting dysfunction in the central nervous system (CNS). To seek potential underlying changes in synaptic function, we used a newly developed protocol to measure alterations in receptor-mediated Ca2+ fluorescence responses of synaptoneurosomes, freshly isolated from selected regions of the CNS concerned with emotionality and pain processing. We compared adult male controls and offspring of rats exposed to social stress in late pregnancy (prenatal stress, PS), which showed programmed behavioural changes indicating anxiety, anhedonia and pain hypersensitivity. We found corresponding increases, in PS rats compared with normal controls, in responsiveness of synaptoneurosomes from frontal cortex to a glutamate receptor (GluR) agonist, and from spinal cord to activators of nociceptive afferents. Through a combined pharmacological and biochemical strategy, we found evidence for a role of phospholipase D1 (PLD1)-mediated signalling, that may involve 5-HT2A receptor (5-HT2AR) activation, at both levels of the nervous system. These changes might participate in underpinning the enduring alterations in behaviour induced by PS.

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