Document Detail

Blunted HPA axis response to stress influences susceptibility to posttraumatic stress response in rats.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16458266     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with low levels of circulating cortisol, and recent studies suggest that cortisol administration may reduce PTSD symptoms. This study investigated the role of cortisol in the manifestation of anxiety- and fear-like symptoms in an animal model of PTSD. METHOD: Magnitude of changes in prevalence of anxiety-like behaviors on the elevated plus-maze and nonhabituated exaggerated startle reaction were compared in three strains of rats exposed to predator stress, with and without prior corticosterone treatment. Extreme behavioral changes in both paradigms implied an extreme behavioral response (EBR), representing PTSD-like symptoms. RESULTS: Lewis rats exhibited greater baseline anxiety-like behaviors and greater stress-induced increases in anxiety-like behaviors than Fischer F344 or Sprague-Dawley rats, with only minor corticosterone increases following stress. Prevalence of EBR was 50% among Lewis rats compared with 10% of Fischer F344 and 25% of Sprague-Dawley rats. Administering corticosterone 1 hour before stress exposure reduced the prevalence of EBR from 50% to 8% in the Lewis rats. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that a blunted HPA response to stress may play a causal role in this model of PTSD and that this susceptibility may be prevented by administration of cortisol before stress exposure.
Hagit Cohen; Joseph Zohar; Yori Gidron; Michael A Matar; Dana Belkind; Uri Loewenthal; Nitsan Kozlovsky; Zeev Kaplan
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2006-02-03
Journal Detail:
Title:  Biological psychiatry     Volume:  59     ISSN:  0006-3223     ISO Abbreviation:  Biol. Psychiatry     Publication Date:  2006 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2006-06-26     Completed Date:  2006-09-07     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0213264     Medline TA:  Biol Psychiatry     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1208-18     Citation Subset:  IM    
Ministry of Health Mental Health Center, Anxiety and Stress Research Unit, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel.
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MeSH Terms
Analysis of Variance
Behavior, Animal / physiology
Disease Models, Animal
Disease Susceptibility / blood,  psychology
Hydrocortisone / blood
Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System*
Maze Learning / physiology
Pituitary-Adrenal System*
Rats, Inbred F344
Rats, Inbred Lew
Rats, Sprague-Dawley
Startle Reaction / physiology
Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / blood*,  psychology*
Stress, Psychological / blood*,  psychology*
Time Factors
Reg. No./Substance:

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