Document Detail

Individual differences in vulnerability for self-injurious behavior: studies using an animal model.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20974187     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Self-injurious behavior (SIB) is a debilitating characteristic that is prevalent across a broad spectrum of neurodevelopmental disorders. In most of these disorders, some individuals exhibit SIB, whereas others do not. However, the neurobiological mechanisms that confer vulnerability are virtually unexplored. We examined innate characteristics that contribute to vulnerability or resistance for SIB in an animal model of the behavioral pathology. Eighteen outbred Long-Evans rats were screened for behavioral responsiveness to the mild stress of a novel environment. The rats were then categorized as high responders (HR; those rats that had the highest locomotor counts) or low responders (LR; those rats that had lower locomotor counts) by median split. All the rats were then given daily injections of the indirect monoamine agonist pemoline (150 mg/kg/day) for 10 days, and self-injury was evaluated. All 9 HR rats and 5 of the 9 LR rats exhibited self-injury. The HR rats spent more time self-injuring, injured more body sites, and caused larger areas of tissue damage than the LR rats did. Furthermore, the behavioral responsiveness to novelty stress was significantly correlated with each of these measures of self-injury. The HR rats did not exhibit substantially enhanced responses on other measures of psychostimulant action (stereotypy, grooming, locomotion, rearing). Accordingly, vulnerability to develop pemoline-induced SIB is positively correlated with, and can be predicted based upon, a behavioral measure of innate stress responsiveness. These findings suggest that characteristics that are common in developmental disorders may help predispose afflicted individuals to self-injure. The findings also extend the variety of behavioral pathologies (e.g. drug addiction) for which the HR/LR model predicts vulnerability.
Amber M Muehlmann; Jennifer A Wilkinson; Darragh P Devine
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2010-10-23
Journal Detail:
Title:  Behavioural brain research     Volume:  217     ISSN:  1872-7549     ISO Abbreviation:  Behav. Brain Res.     Publication Date:  2011 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-12-20     Completed Date:  2011-04-01     Revised Date:  2013-07-03    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8004872     Medline TA:  Behav Brain Res     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  148-54     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Department of Psychology, Behavioral Neuroscience Program, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Central Nervous System Stimulants / toxicity*
Disease Models, Animal
Motor Activity / physiology
Pemoline / toxicity*
Rats, Long-Evans
Self-Injurious Behavior / chemically induced*
Stereotyped Behavior / drug effects
Stress, Psychological / physiopathology
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Central Nervous System Stimulants; 2152-34-3/Pemoline

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