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Closed Access item Antipsychotic drugs reverse the disruption in prefrontal cortex function produced by NMDA receptor blockade with phencyclidine

Authors:Kargieman, Lucila
Santana, Noemí
Mengod, Guadalupe
Celada, Pau
Artigas, Francesc
Keywords:Neuronal oscillations, NMDA receptor antagonists, Schizophrenia, Delta frequency, Thalamus
Issue Date:11-Sep-2007
Publisher:National Academy of Sciences (U.S.)
Citation:Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 104(37): 14843-14848 (2007)
Abstract:NMDA receptor (NMDA-R) antagonists are extensively used as schizophrenia models because of their ability to evoke positive and negative symptoms as well as cognitive deficits similar to those of the illness. Cognitive deficits in schizophrenia are associated with prefrontal cortex (PFC) abnormalities. These deficits are of particular interest because an early improvement in cognitive performance predicts a better long-term clinical outcome. Here, we examined the effect of the noncompetitive NMDA-R antagonist phencyclidine (PCP) on PFC function to understand the cellular and network elements involved in its schizomimetic actions. PCP induces a marked disruption of the activity of the PFC in the rat, increasing and decreasing the activity of 45% and 33% of the pyramidal neurons recorded, respectively (22% of the neurons were unaffected). Concurrently, PCP markedly reduced cortical synchrony in the delta frequency range (0.3–4 Hz) as assessed by recording local field potentials. The subsequent administration of the antipsychotic drugs haloperidol and clozapine reversed PCP effects on pyramidal cell firing and cortical synchronization. PCP increased c-fos expression in PFC pyramidal neurons, an effect prevented by the administration of clozapine. PCP also enhanced c-fos expression in the centromedial and mediodorsal (but not reticular) nuclei of the thalamus, suggesting the participation of enhanced thalamocortical excitatory inputs. These results shed light on the involvement of PFC in the schizomimetic action of NMDA-R antagonists and show that antipsychotic drugs may partly exert their therapeutic effect by normalizing a disrupted PFC activity, an effect that may add to subcortical dopamine receptor blockade.
Publisher version (URL):http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0704848104
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/10261/34573
ISSN:0027-8424
E-ISSNmetadata.dc.identifier.doi = DOI:1091-6490
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