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Functional anatomy and modulation of sepsis-induced paraventricular nucleus activation

Grant number: 17/25628-3
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2018
Effective date (End): July 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Physiology - Physiology of Organs and Systems
Principal researcher:Maria José Alves da Rocha
Grantee:Luís Henrique Angenendt da Costa
Supervisor abroad: Tarek Sharshar
Home Institution: Faculdade de Odontologia de Ribeirão Preto (FORP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Research place: Institut Pasteur, France  
Associated to the scholarship:16/07803-0 - Effect of inhibition of microglial activation on neuroimmunoendocrine parameters during sepsis, BP.DR


Sepsis, a systemic inflammatory condition triggered by an infectious agent, induces an inflammatory status in central nervous system (CSN) which leads to autonomic, cognitive and behavioral alterations. The paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) plays a major role in endocrine control during sepsis and is associated to the regulation of neurohypophyseal hormones and HPA axis. One of the main connections to PVN is the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA), that in septic animals was found to be susceptible to microglial and synaptic alterations. However, it is not known how sepsis alters the communication between these nuclei and leads to endocrine alterations. In order to elucidate this question, we will first use immunostaining and transgenic mice to temporally evaluate the activation of these areas, as well as in vivo electrophysiology techniques to detect abnormal electrical activity. The communication between PVN- CeA will be analyzed by retrograde neurotracing with glycoprotein (G)-deleted rabies virus. We will also investigate if sepsis induces changes in structure and synaptic plasticity through morphological analysis of dendritic spines and optogenetics to stimulate/ inhibit afferent neurons. Finally, we will perform in vivo studies using optogenetics and inhibition of microglial activation (with minocycline) and the consequent effects on ACTH and corticosterone secretion.

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