Important gender differences in mood disorders result in a greater susceptibility for women. Accumulating evidence suggests a reciprocal modulation between the 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) system and neuroactive steroids. Previous data from our laboratory have shown that during pregnancy, the firing activity of 5-HT neurons increases in parallel with progesterone levels. This study was undertaken to evaluate the putative modulation of the 5-HT neuronal firing activity by different neurosteroids. Female rats received i.c.v. for 7 days a dose of 50 micro g/kg per day of one of the following steroids: progesterone, pregnenolone, 5beta-pregnane-3,20-dione (5beta-DHP), 5beta-pregnan-3alpha-ol,20-one, 5beta-pregnan-3beta-ol,20-one, 5alpha-pregnane-3,20-dione, 5alpha-pregnan-3alpha-ol,20-one (allopregnanolone, 3alpha,5alpha-THP), 5alpha-pregnane-3beta-ol,20-one and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). 5beta-DHP and DHEA were also administered for 14 and 21 days (50 micro g/kg per day, i.c.v.) as well as concomitantly with the selective sigma 1 (sigma1) receptor antagonist NE-100. In vivo, extracellular unitary recording of 5-HT neurons performed in the dorsal raphe nucleus of these rats revealed that DHEA, 5beta-DHP and 3alpha,5alpha-THP significantly increased the firing activity of the 5-HT neurons. Interestingly, 5beta-DHP and DHEA showed different time-frames for their effects with 5beta-DHP having its greatest effect after 7 days to return to control values after 21 days, whereas DHEA demonstrated a sustained effect over the 21 day period. NE-100 prevented the effect of DHEA but not of 5beta-DHP, thus indicating that its sigma1 receptors mediate the effect of DHEA but not that of 5beta-DHP. In conclusion, our results offer a cellular basis for potential antidepressant effects of neurosteroids, which may prove important particularly for women with affective disorders.
Journal of Endocrinology is committed to supporting researchers in demonstrating the impact of their articles published in the journal.
The two types of article metrics we measure are (i) more traditional full-text views and pdf downloads, and (ii) Altmetric data, which shows the wider impact of articles in a range of non-traditional sources, such as social media.
More information is on the Reasons to publish page.
|Sept 2018 onwards||Past Year||Past 30 Days|
|Full Text Views||108||100||2|