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      Social reward requires coordinated activity of accumbens oxytocin and 5HT

      1 , 1 , 1 , 1

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          Abstract

          Social behaviors in species as diverse as honey bees and humans promote group survival but often come at some cost to the individual. Although reinforcement of adaptive social interactions is ostensibly required for the evolutionary persistence of these behaviors, the neural mechanisms by which social reward is encoded by the brain are largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that in mice oxytocin (OT) acts as a social reinforcement signal within the nucleus accumbens (NAc) core, where it elicits a presynaptically expressed long-term depression of excitatory synaptic transmission in medium spiny neurons. Although the NAc receives OT receptor-containing inputs from several brain regions, genetic deletion of these receptors specifically from dorsal raphe nucleus, which provides serotonergic (5-HT) innervation to the NAc, abolishes the reinforcing properties of social interaction. Furthermore, OT-induced synaptic plasticity requires activation of NAc 5-HT1b receptors, the blockade of which prevents social reward. These results demonstrate that the rewarding properties of social interaction in mice require the coordinated activity of OT and 5-HT in the NAc, a mechanistic insight with implications for understanding the pathogenesis of social dysfunction in neuropsychiatric disorders such as autism.

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          Most cited references 38

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          A gene expression atlas of the central nervous system based on bacterial artificial chromosomes.

          The mammalian central nervous system (CNS) contains a remarkable array of neural cells, each with a complex pattern of connections that together generate perceptions and higher brain functions. Here we describe a large-scale screen to create an atlas of CNS gene expression at the cellular level, and to provide a library of verified bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) vectors and transgenic mouse lines that offer experimental access to CNS regions, cell classes and pathways. We illustrate the use of this atlas to derive novel insights into gene function in neural cells, and into principal steps of CNS development. The atlas, library of BAC vectors and BAC transgenic mice generated in this screen provide a rich resource that allows a broad array of investigations not previously available to the neuroscience community.
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            Behavioural phenotyping assays for mouse models of autism.

            Autism is a heterogeneous neurodevelopmental disorder of unknown aetiology that affects 1 in 100-150 individuals. Diagnosis is based on three categories of behavioural criteria: abnormal social interactions, communication deficits and repetitive behaviours. Strong evidence for a genetic basis has prompted the development of mouse models with targeted mutations in candidate genes for autism. As the diagnostic criteria for autism are behavioural, phenotyping these mouse models requires behavioural assays with high relevance to each category of the diagnostic symptoms. Behavioural neuroscientists are generating a comprehensive set of assays for social interaction, communication and repetitive behaviours to test hypotheses about the causes of autism. Robust phenotypes in mouse models hold great promise as translational tools for discovering effective treatments for components of autism spectrum disorders.
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              Measuring reward with the conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm: update of the last decade.

               T Tzschentke (2007)
              Conditioned place preference (CPP) continues to be one of the most popular models to study the motivational effects of drugs and non-drug treatments in experimental animals. This is obvious from a steady year-to-year increase in the number of publications reporting the use this model. Since the compilation of the preceding review in 1998, more than 1000 new studies using place conditioning have been published, and the aim of the present review is to provide an overview of these recent publications. There are a number of trends and developments that are obvious in the literature of the last decade. First, as more and more knockout and transgenic animals become available, place conditioning is increasingly used to assess the motivational effects of drugs or non-drug rewards in genetically modified animals. Second, there is a still small but growing literature on the use of place conditioning to study the motivational aspects of pain, a field of pre-clinical research that has so far received little attention, because of the lack of appropriate animal models. Third, place conditioning continues to be widely used to study tolerance and sensitization to the rewarding effects of drugs induced by pre-treatment regimens. Fourth, extinction/reinstatement procedures in place conditioning are becoming increasingly popular. This interesting approach is thought to model certain aspects of relapse to addictive behavior and has previously almost exclusively been studied in drug self-administration paradigms. It has now also become established in the place conditioning literature and provides an additional and technically easy approach to this important phenomenon. The enormous number of studies to be covered in this review prevented in-depth discussion of many methodological, pharmacological or neurobiological aspects; to a large extent, the presentation of data had to be limited to a short and condensed summary of the most relevant findings.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                0410462
                6011
                Nature
                Nature
                Nature
                0028-0836
                1476-4687
                6 September 2013
                12 September 2013
                10 July 2014
                : 501
                : 7466
                : 179-184
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Nancy Pritzker Laboratory, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, 265 Campus Drive, Stanford CA 94305, USA
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence to: R. Malenka, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, 265 Campus Drive, Room G1021, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, Tel. 650-724-2730, Fax. 650-724-2753, malenka@ 123456stanford.edu
                [†]

                Current address: Department of Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins University, 855 N. Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA

                Article
                NIHMS512108
                10.1038/nature12518
                4091761
                24025838
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