Navigation Links
Neural Basis of Anxiety: Newer Insights

People suffering from anxiety tend to interpret confusing situations or those that may possibly be dangerous, as intimidating. Italian researchers from the Mouse Biology Unit of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), have now uncovered the neural basis for such anxiety behaviour in mice.

Their report, in the current issue of Nature Neuroscience, states that crucial roles played by a receptor for the messenger serotonin and a neural circuit involving a brain region called the hippocampus, is responsible for mediating fear responses in ambiguous situations.

A mouse that has learned that a certain cue, for example a tone, is always followed by an electrical shock comes to associate the two and freezes with fear whenever it hears the tone even if the shock is not delivered. But in real life the situation is not always so clear; a stimulus will only sometimes be followed by a threat while other times nothing might happen. Normal mice show less fear towards such ambiguous cues than to clearly threatening stimuli.

A team of researchers led by Cornelius Gross at the EMBL Mouse Biology Unit now discovered that this response to ambiguous stimuli requires a specific receptor molecule for serotonin, a signal many brain cells use to communicate. Mice that lack the serotonin receptor 1A have problems processing ambiguous stimuli and react to them with full-fledged fear responses. The cause is wrongly connected cells in their brains. Serotonin signalling is very important for brain development and if the receptor 1A is missing, defects arise in the wiring of the brain that affect the behaviour of mice later on in life.

"In humans serotonin signalling has been implicated in disorders including depression and anxiety and like our mice patients suffering from these conditions also overreact to ambiguous situations," Gross says. "The next step was to identify the brain regions that are responsible for such complex fea r behaviour and the processing of ambiguous cues."

Using a new technique to switch off neural activity in selective brain cells in living mice, Gross and his colleagues discovered that a specific part of the hippocampus is required for correct processing of ambiguous stimuli.

"Shutting down a specific circuit in the hippocampus abolished fear reactions only to ambiguous cues," says Theodoros Tsetsenis who carried out the research in Gross' lab. "The pathway must be involved in processing and assessing the value of stimuli. It seems to bias mice to interpret situations as threatening."

The hippocampus is mainly known as a region important for learning and memory, but the results reveal a more general role in evaluating information and assessing contingencies. Neural circuits that govern fundamental behaviours like fear are often often conserved between species and patient studies suggest a role for the hippocampus in anxiety also in humans.

The new insights gained into serotonin signalling via the receptor 1A and the role of the hippocampus in fear behaviour in mice promise to shed light on the neural basis of anxiety disorders and open up new avenues for therapies.


'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. Gamma Knife Offers New Hope For Trigeminal Neuralgia Patients
2. Botox Relieves Neuralgic Pain
3. Fetal Neural Grafts Improves Motor and Cognitive Function in Huntington Patients
4. A boon to the paralyzed -Brain Gate Neural Interface System
5. Research Reveal A New Angle On Neural Circuits.
6. Neural Stem Cells Reduce Parkinsons Symptoms in Monkeys
7. Genetics Might BE The Basis For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
8. Molecular Basis Of ALS Found
9. Biological Basis for Homosexuality
10. Biological Basis Behind a Couch Potato
11. Basis for Nerve fiber Damage in Multiple Sclerosis Discovered
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... In just a short time ... already been receiving positive feedback from customers trying the product for the first time, ... Brain Booster was developed by neurosurgeon Shawn Moore, MD, for everyone from athletes at ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... ... The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) stated in the Inpatient ... Worksheet S-10 to distribute Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) Uncompensated Care Payments over the next ... on October 17, 2017 at 2 P.M. EST and uncover how you can prepare ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... ... feel good program from Leany Greeny delivers positive results in just three weeks. ... health and kickstart the metabolism. Fitting seamlessly into hectic work and family schedules, ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... ... September 20, 2017 , ... “Finn Mouseson”: follows the exciting ... an average life. This mouse sets out on a journey that will show that ... is the creation of newly published author and illustrator, Melody Gersonde-Mickelson, who has earned ...
(Date:9/20/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... September 20, 2017 , ... “Psalms of ... give peace of mind and move the readers one step closer to God. “Psalms ... has realized that his mistakes that have been made within his life are the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/6/2017)... , Sept. 6, 2017 NeuroRx, a clinical ... Suicidal Ideation and Behavior (ASIB), has been granted Fast Track ... sequential therapy of NRX-100 (ketamine HCl) followed by NRX-101 (D-cycloserine ... a pivotal trial of this sequential therapy targeting patients who ... 1 ...
(Date:9/5/2017)... , Sept. 5, 2017  Just 18 months ... Insight is pleased to announce the appointment of three ... Tammy Wynne , Dominic Jones-Phillips and ... industry. Tammy ... team of market access writers. She has over ten ...
(Date:8/31/2017)... PM360,s annual Innovations Issue, published in ... innovations happening across the industry. Established six years ago, ... providing a comprehensive look at the newest and most ... innovative companies, startups, divisions, products, services, and strategies from ... "Everyone in this industry wants to do better—in all ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: