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  • 1
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, June 15, 2013, Vol.247, p.248(11)
    Description: To link to full-text access for this article, visit this link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2013.03.039 Byline: Vanessa Kloke, Rebecca S. Heiming, Stefanie Bolting, Sylvia Kaiser, Lars Lewejohann, Klaus-Peter Lesch, Norbert Sachser Abstract: acents Mice varying in 5-HTT expression experienced different early environments. acents Abolished 5-HTT expression reduced measures of state as well as trait anxiety. acents Early environment affected only trait but not state anxiety. acents Moderately adverse conditions lowered trait anxiety compared to social enrichment. acents Thus, anxiety profiles can be affected by the early environment and 5-HTT genotype. Author Affiliation: (a) Department of Behavioural Biology, University of Munster, Germany (b) Otto Creutzfeldt Center for Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience, University of Munster, Germany (c) Division of Molecular Psychiatry, Laboratory of Translational Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry, Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy, University of Wurzburg, Germany Article History: Received 23 January 2013; Revised 15 March 2013; Accepted 21 March 2013
    Keywords: Serotonin -- Genetic Aspects ; House Mouse -- Genetic Aspects ; Neurosciences -- Genetic Aspects ; Psychotherapy
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    Source: Cengage Learning, Inc.
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  • 2
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 2011, Vol.219(2), pp.291-301
    Description: ► Aggression towards a docile opponent depended on 5-HTT genotype and venue of a contest. ► Homozygous 5-HTT KO mice reacted to the venue and the opponent's behaviour. ► Heterozygous 5-HTT KO mice were only influenced by the venue of the contest. ► Wildtypes behaved always the same, irrespective of venue and opponent. ► Varying inborn levels of anxiety and perception of environmental adversity are seen as causal factors. Aggression can be modulated by both genetic and environmental factors. Here, we analyse how the serotonin transporter (5-HTT) genotype and the environmental situation in which a contest takes place shape the display of offensive aggression. Therefore, male wildtype, heterozygous, and homozygous 5-HTT knockout mice, which are known to differ in inborn levels of anxiety, were confronted three times with a docile opponent in one of three environmental situations: own territory, opponent's territory or neutral area. The main findings were: The frequency of the contestant in order to gather information about him depended significantly on the venue but not on the genotype with lowest frequencies in the opponent's territory. The the opponent was significantly influenced by the 5-HTT genotype but not by the venue: Homozygous 5-HTT knockout mice showed longest latencies. The was significantly influenced by the 5-HTT genotype, the environmental situation, and a genotype by environment interaction. It is likely that, due to their varying genetic predisposition for anxiety, mice of the three genotypes were differentially affected by the aversiveness of the respective venue and the opponent's behaviour, which influenced their decision to display offensive aggression. As a consequence, the amount of aggression shown by homozygous 5-HTT knockout mice was influenced by the venue and the opponent's behaviour, whereas heterozygotes reacted only to the venue. Strikingly, wildtypes behaved always the same way, irrespective of venue and opponent.
    Keywords: 5-Htt ; Genotype ; Anxiety ; Gene × Environment Interaction ; Risk Profile ; Cost/Benefit Ratio ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 18727549
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  • 3
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, April 15, Vol.283, p.116(5)
    Description: To link to full-text access for this article, visit this link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2015.01.031 Byline: Niklas Kastner, S. Helene Richter, Klaus-Peter Lesch, Rebecca S. Schreiber, Sylvia Kaiser, Norbert Sachser Abstract: * Mice varying in 5-HTT expression were provided with a beneficial experience. * The beneficial experience reduced anxiety-like behaviour in the open field test. * This effect was only apparent in mice with reduced 5-HTT expression. * Thus, susceptibility to beneficial experience seems to depend on 5-HTT genotype. Author Affiliation: (a) Department of Behavioural Biology, University of Munster, Badestra[sz]e 13, 48149 Munster, Germany (b) Division of Molecular Psychiatry, Laboratory of Translational Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry, Psychosomatics & Psychotherapy, University of Wurzburg, Fuchsleinstra[sz]e 15, 97070 Wurzburg, Germany Article History: Received 17 November 2014; Revised 15 January 2015; Accepted 19 January 2015
    Keywords: Serotonin ; House Mouse ; Genetic Research ; Psychotherapy
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    Source: Cengage Learning, Inc.
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  • 4
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 15 June 2013, Vol.247, pp.248-258
    Description: Developmental mechanisms that shape behaviour are under environmental as well as genetic influence, commonly referred to as gene-by-environment interaction (GxE). Here, we compared the role of different early environments – adverse, standard, and enriched – for the modulation of the anxiety profile in mice varying in serotonin transporter (5-HTT) genotype. Early-life adversity was simulated by exposing lactating 5-HTT +/− dams to soiled bedding of unfamiliar males (UMB), signalling the danger of infanticide. An enriched early environment was established by communal nesting (CN). 5-HTT +/− females of a third group were housed under standard nesting conditions (SN) of individual nesting. The offspring (5-HTT +/+, 5-HTT +/−, and 5-HTT −/−) were analyzed for anxiety-like and exploratory behaviour in a battery of tests. The main findings were: (1) Maternal care was reduced in UMB compared to CN dams. (2) There was no significant variation in state anxiety levels between UMB, SN, and CN offspring. (3) UMB offspring showed significantly lower levels of trait anxiety compared to CN offspring, while SN offspring were intermediate. (4) There was a significant main effect of genotype, with highest levels of state and trait anxiety in 5-HTT −/− mice. The findings corroborate that anxiety profiles in mice can be affected by both early environmental conditions and 5-HTT genotype. Notably, state and trait anxiety of an individual can independently be affected by the early environment.
    Keywords: 5-Htt Knockout Mice ; State Anxiety ; Trait Anxiety ; Communal Nesting ; Maternal Care ; Resilience ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 18727549
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  • 5
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 15 April 2015, Vol.283, pp.116-120
    Description: Over the past years, certain “vulnerability genes” have been identified that play a key role in the development of mood and anxiety disorders. In particular, a low-expressing variant of the human serotonin transporter (5-HTT) gene has been described that renders individuals more susceptible to adverse experience and hence to the development of psychiatric diseases. However, some authors have recently argued that lower 5-HTT expression not only increases vulnerability to adverse experiences, but also enhances susceptibility to beneficial experiences, thus promoting phenotypic plasticity. The aim of the present study was to assess the effects of 5-HTT expression on susceptibility to beneficial experience in a hypothesis-driven experimental approach. Using a well-established rodent model for the human polymorphism, male heterozygous 5-HTT knockout (HET) and 5-HTT wildtype (WT) mice were either provided with the beneficial experience of cohabitation with a female (mating experience) or kept as naïve controls in single-housing conditions. Following the experimental treatment, they were tested for their anxiety-like behaviour and exploratory locomotion in three widely used behavioural tests. Interestingly, while cohabitation reduced anxiety-like behaviour and increased exploratory locomotion in the open field test in HET mice, it did not affect WT mice, pointing to a genotype-dependent susceptibility to the beneficial experience. Thus, our results might support the view of the low expressing version of the 5-HTT gene as a “plasticity” rather than a “vulnerability” variant.
    Keywords: Serotonin Transporter ; Mice ; Beneficial Experience ; Anxiety-Like Behavior ; Gene-By-Environment Interaction ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 18727549
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 2015, Vol.283, pp.116-120
    Keywords: Serotonin Transporter ; Mice ; Beneficial Experience ; Anxiety-Like Behavior ; Gene-By-Environment Interaction
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    ISSN: 1872-7549
    Source: NARCIS (National Academic Research and Collaborations Information System)
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  • 7
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 2013, Vol.247, pp.248-258
    Keywords: 5-Htt Knockout Mice ; State Anxiety ; Trait Anxiety ; Communal Nesting ; Maternal Care ; Resilience
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    ISSN: 1872-7549
    Source: NARCIS (National Academic Research and Collaborations Information System)
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  • 8
    Language: English
    In: Behavioural Brain Research, 2010, Vol.211(2), pp.220-228
    Description: Humans differing in the amount of serotonin transporter (5-HTT) are known to be differentially prone to neuropsychiatric disorders. Genetically modified mice eliciting abrogated transporter function display a number of corresponding phenotypic changes in behavioural tests. However, a characterisation of the effects of serotonergic malfunction on the day-to-day life is still missing. Yet, this is precisely what an animal model is needed for in order to be meaningful for translation into human anxiety disorders. Homozygous 5-HTT knockout mice, heterozygous 5-HTT mice, and wild-type controls were housed in groups of males of the same genotype in spacious and richly structured cages. This enriched environment allowed the animals to show a wide variety of spontaneous behavioural patterns quantified by a trained experimenter. Additionally the mice could emigrate from the cages through a tunnel and a water basin. The results revealed unaltered daily behaviour in heterozygous mice. In knockouts, however, reduced locomotion, increased socio-positive behaviour, and reduced aggressive behaviour were observed. Nevertheless, all groups showed a significant amount of aggressive behaviour and there were no differences regarding the establishment of dominance relationships, emigration, and the number of animals remaining in their groups. In a second step, pairs of heterozygous and wild-type males and pairs of knockout and wild-type males were brought together in order to assess their ability to obtain a dominant social position in a direct encounter. Heterozygous mice did not differ from wild-type mice but knockout mice were significantly inferior in obtaining the dominant position. In addition to confirming multiple effects of abolished 5-HTT function in a real life situation, this study supports the central role of the 5-HTT in the control of social interactions.
    Keywords: Spontaneous Behaviour ; Emigration ; Dominance ; Anxiety ; Mice ; 5-Htt ; Anatomy & Physiology
    ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 0166-4328
    E-ISSN: 18727549
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