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Axonal transport proteins and depressive like behavior, following Chronic Unpredictable Mild Stress in male rat

Bakhtiarzadeh, Fatemeh, Nahavandi, Arezo, Goudarzi, Mina, Shirvalilou, Sakine, Rakhshan, Kamran, Niknazar, Somayeh
Physiology & behavior 2018 v.194 pp. 9-14
axonal transport, axons, brain, corticosterone, dynein ATPase, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, forced swimming test, gene expression, genes, kinesin, males, mental depression, messenger RNA, mitochondria, neurodegenerative diseases, neurotransmitters, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, rats, secretion, staining, transport proteins
A common mood disorder, depression has long been considered a leading cause of disability worldwide. Chronic stress is involved in the development of various psychiatric diseases including major depressive disorder. Stress can induce depressive-like symptoms and initiate neurodegenerative processes in the brain. The neurodegenerative theory of depression holds impaired axonal transport as a negative factor in neural survival. Axonal transport is a critical mechanism for normal neuronal function, playing crucial roles in axon growth, neurotransmitter secretion, normal mitochondrial function and neural survival.To investigate the effects of stress-induced depression, in the present study, we evaluated behavior by forced swimming test (FST), corticosterone plasma level by ELISA assay, hippocampal mRNA expression of three genes (NGF, kinesin and dynein) via real-time PCR and hippocamp count by Nissl staining in male Wistar rats.Our data demonstrated a significant decrease in the expression of NGF, kinesin and dynein genes in CUMS groups compared to the control group (non-stressed) (p < 0.05). CUMS also caused an elevation in immobility time and corticosterone plasma level in the stressed group compared to the controls (p < 0.01 and p < 0.05, respectively).The results suggested that the possibility of stress-induced depressive behavior associated with hippocampal neurodegeneration process is correlated with a low expression of kinesin and dynein, the two most important proteins in axonal transport.