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A new proposal of depressive-like behavior analysis in the Forced Swimming Test in the Wistar Audiogenic Rat (WAR) strain

Grant number: 15/20402-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2015
Effective date (End): November 30, 2016
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology
Principal Investigator:Norberto Garcia Cairasco
Grantee:Iago Blanco Bacchiega
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirão Preto (FMRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil


Epilepsy is assumed as one of the major world prevalence neurological condition which currently affects around 50 million people. Its incidence grows mainly in developing countries. The Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) affects around 17% of the global population and exhibit significant commorbities, coexisting, for instance, with epilepsy. Animal models are fundamental research tools to understanding the comorbidities underlying mechanisms, in depressive like behaviour studies. The Wistar Audiogenic Rat (WAR) is a strain selected from teh inbreeding of Wistar rats that exhibited convulsive seizures behavior after acoustic stimuli. This stran display hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis hyperactivation and exacerbated corticosterone secretion, central serotonin reduction and anxiogenic behavior. These features are also presented in MDD diagnosed patients. All of these endophenotipic characteristics makes the WAR strain an interesting and animal for commorbiditie epilepsy-depression studies. The Forced Swim Test is one of the most widely used test in rodents and it is commonly used as antidepressant preclinical evaluation , the FST analysis is based on reduced number of behaviors focus mainly on the immobility behavior submitted to a swimming environment. Inspite of presenting good reliability, it is observed inespecificity in the immobility performance regarding the effect of antidepressants and psychostimulants drugs. Also there is still controversial implications of pretest session. Therefore, the aim of this project is to propose a FST neuroetological analysis (behavioral sequences) over the pretest and test sessions, as well as to assess the neuronal substrate involved to depressive like behavior trought c-Fos immunohistochemistry in WAR rats. (AU)

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