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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effects of Mild Early Life Stress on Abnormal Emotion-related Behaviors in 5-HTT Knockout Mice.

A low-expressing polymorphic variant of the serotonin transporter ( 5-HTT) gene has been associated with emotional disorders in humans and non-human primates following exposure to early life trauma. 5-HTT gene knockout (KO) mice exhibit increased anxiety- and depression-related behaviors, and provide a model to study interactions between 5-HTT gene variation and early life stress. The present study assessed the effects of postnatal footshock stress on the development of emotion-related behaviors in 5-HTT KO mice. Results showed that 5-HTT KO mice displayed a profile of suppressed exploratory behavior and increased anxiety-like behavior in the light/dark, elevated plus-maze and open field tests, as well as increased depression-related behavior in the forced swim test following repeated exposure to the test. Postnatal exposure to footshock stress did not affect emotion-related behaviors in non-mutant C57BL/6J mice or modify phenotypic abnormalities in 5-HTT KO. Data provide further evidence of emotional abnormalities following genetic disruption of the 5-HTT.[1]


  1. Effects of Mild Early Life Stress on Abnormal Emotion-related Behaviors in 5-HTT Knockout Mice. Carroll, J.C., Boyce-Rustay, J.M., Millstein, R., Yang, R., Wiedholz, L.M., Murphy, D.L., Holmes, A. Behav. Genet. (2007) [Pubmed]
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