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Effect of postnatal environmental enrichment on LTP induction in the CA1 area of hippocampus of prenatally traffic noise-stressed female rats

  • Running title: Environmental enrichment & synaptic plasticity
  • Received: 09 July 2023 Revised: 26 September 2023 Accepted: 16 October 2023 Published: 20 October 2023
  • Early-life stress negatively alters mammalian brain programming. Environmental enrichment (EE) has beneficial effects on brain structure and function. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of postnatal environmental enrichment on long-term potentiation (LTP) induction in the hippocampal CA1 area of prenatally stressed female rats. The pregnant Wistar rats were housed in a standard animal room and exposed to traffic noise stress 2 hours/day during the third week of pregnancy. Their offspring either remained intact (ST) or received enrichment (SE) for a month starting from postnatal day 21. The control groups either remained intact (CO) or received enrichment (CE). Basic field excitatory post-synaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were recorded in the CA1 area; then, LTP was induced by high-frequency stimulation. Finally, the serum levels of corticosterone were measured. Our results showed that while the prenatal noise stress decreased the baseline responses of the ST rats when compared to the control rats (P < 0.001), the postnatal EE increased the fEPSPs of both the CE and SE animals when compared to the respective controls. Additionally, high-frequency stimulation (HFS) induced LTP in the fEPSPs of the CO rats (P < 0.001) and failed to induce LTP in the fEPSPs of the ST animals. The enriched condition caused increased potentiation of post-HFS responses in the controls (P < 0.001) and restored the disrupted synaptic plasticity of the CA1 area in the prenatally stressed rats. Likewise, the postnatal EE decreased the elevated serum corticosterone of prenatally stressed offspring (P < 0.001). In conclusion, the postnatal EE restored the stress induced impairment of synaptic plasticity in rats' female offspring.

    Citation: Fatemeh Aghighi, Mahmoud Salami, Sayyed Alireza Talaei. Effect of postnatal environmental enrichment on LTP induction in the CA1 area of hippocampus of prenatally traffic noise-stressed female rats[J]. AIMS Neuroscience, 2023, 10(4): 269-281. doi: 10.3934/Neuroscience.2023021

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  • Early-life stress negatively alters mammalian brain programming. Environmental enrichment (EE) has beneficial effects on brain structure and function. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of postnatal environmental enrichment on long-term potentiation (LTP) induction in the hippocampal CA1 area of prenatally stressed female rats. The pregnant Wistar rats were housed in a standard animal room and exposed to traffic noise stress 2 hours/day during the third week of pregnancy. Their offspring either remained intact (ST) or received enrichment (SE) for a month starting from postnatal day 21. The control groups either remained intact (CO) or received enrichment (CE). Basic field excitatory post-synaptic potentials (fEPSPs) were recorded in the CA1 area; then, LTP was induced by high-frequency stimulation. Finally, the serum levels of corticosterone were measured. Our results showed that while the prenatal noise stress decreased the baseline responses of the ST rats when compared to the control rats (P < 0.001), the postnatal EE increased the fEPSPs of both the CE and SE animals when compared to the respective controls. Additionally, high-frequency stimulation (HFS) induced LTP in the fEPSPs of the CO rats (P < 0.001) and failed to induce LTP in the fEPSPs of the ST animals. The enriched condition caused increased potentiation of post-HFS responses in the controls (P < 0.001) and restored the disrupted synaptic plasticity of the CA1 area in the prenatally stressed rats. Likewise, the postnatal EE decreased the elevated serum corticosterone of prenatally stressed offspring (P < 0.001). In conclusion, the postnatal EE restored the stress induced impairment of synaptic plasticity in rats' female offspring.


    Abbreviations

    AMPA

    α amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid

    BDNF

    brain derived neurotrophic factor

    EE

    environmental enrichment

    fEPSPs

    field excitatory post-synaptic potentials

    GRs

    glucocorticoid receptors

    GABA

    gamma-Aminobutyric acid

    HPA

    hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal

    HFS

    high-frequency stimulation

    LTD

    long-term depression

    LTP

    long-term potentiation

    NMDA

    N-methyl-D-aspartate

    PS

    prenatal stress

    RIA

    radioimmunoassay

    加载中

    Acknowledgments



    This study was supported financially by Grant No. 9767, Deputy of Research and Technology, Kashan Medical Sciences University (KAUMS). We would like to thank A. Vatankhah for her technical support. Thanks also to KAUMS Animal Breeding Center for supplying the animals.

    Conflict of interest



    The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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