Realize different aversive stimuli and responding appropriately to them is essential for the survival of species. In the presence of some threat, an animal can develop a restricted set of responses (e.g. freezing, crouching, escape, upright) which make up defensive behaviors. Understanding how different structures are organized to define these responses from different stimuli is very important to better understand the formation of animal behavior. A recurrent stimulus during a confrontation with a co-specific one is the presence of physical or psychological limits, which characterizes the entrapment. Observations by our lab have suggested that in C57Bl/6 male mice a septo-hippocampal-hypothalamic path is likely to respond to the environmental boundaries, contributing to the organization of defensive behaviors during social and restraint stress. This path covers the regions juxtadorsomedial of lateral hypothalamic area, and regions of the septo-hippocampal system, where is located the Boundary vector cells, which codes for environmental boundaries, like a dominant male or tube's walls. In order to understand the role of the septo-hippocampal-hypothalamic circuit in social defense, we intend to evaluate the behavioral and neural activation effects of the chemogenetic inhibition of LHAjd in C57Bl/6 mice submitted to the intruder-resident paradigm.
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