Session: 7

PS7-06 | Effects of a social and material deprivation murine model on gene expression in medial prefrontal cortex

Rocío Priegue

Laboratorio de Neuroepigenética - IQUIBICEN - CONICET / DQB - UBA

Embryonic development and early childhood are particularly vulnerable stages for neurodevelopment. Often, people who are disadvantaged during these stages live in contexts with many of the needs unsatisfied instead of facing an isolated type of difficulty. This is why we developed a murine model of social and material deprivation (SMD) that intends to reflect the complexity of people’s different realities.
During the face validation of the model we found that the male pups of the SMD group were more dominant and more aggressive than their control counterparts.
The aim of this work was to analyze the consequences of the model on gene expression in the brain. We carry out this analysis in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) due to its role in social behaviors. Since the excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) balance is important for this type of behavior, we began the exploration for genes related to the GABA- and glutamatergic pathways. In addition to that, given its role in neural plasticity, we also evaluated the expression of Immediate Early Genes (IEGs).
We found an increased expression in NMDA glutamate receptors in SMD mice and an increase in the expression of a serotonergic receptor in males .We did not find changes in IEGs nor GABA-related genes or AMPA glutamate receptors.
These results suggest that the treatment has effects on the E/I balance in the mPFC, which could explain the behavioural changes mentioned above. They also prompt further study of other areas of the brain.