The behavioral phenotype of a transgenic mouse overexpressing a galanin receptor 2 (GaIR2)-enhanced, green fluorescent protein (EGFP)-construct under the platelet-derived growth factor-B promoter, and of controls, was assessed in various behavioral tests, such as the Porsolt forced swim test, as well as the open field, elevated plus maze and passive avoidance tests. In addition, the distribution of GaIR2-EGFP expressing cell bodies and processes was studied in the brain of these mice using histochemical methods. Three age groups of the transgenic mice demonstrated decreased levels of immobility in the forced swim test, indicative of antidepressive-like behavior and/or increased stress resistance. Anxiety-like behaviors, measured in two different tests, did not differ between the GaIR2-overexpressing and the wild-type mice, nor did motor activity levels, emotional learning or memory behaviors. High levels of GaIR2 mRNA and protein expression were observed in the presubiculum, subiculum, cingulate cortex, retrosplenial granular and agranular cortices, subregions of prefrontal cortex, and the olfactory bulb, regions which are directly or indirectly implicated in depression-like behavior. These results may contribute to the understanding of the pathophysiology of major depressive disorder and the role of GaIR2 in the regulation of mood, and suggest a potential therapeutic effect by targeting the GaIR2 for treatment of depressive disorders.
Elsevier , 2011. Vol. 190, 270-288 p.
depression; forced swim test; hippocampal formation; neuropeptide; transgenic mouse