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Understanding inter-individual differences in stress response requires the explanation of genetic influences at multiple phenotypic levels, including complex behaviours and the metabolic responses of brain regions to emotional stimuli. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is anxiolytic and its release is induced by stress. NPY is abundantly expressed in regions of the(More)
The neuropeptide galanin (GAL) is widely expressed in the central nervous system. Animal studies have implicated GAL in alcohol abuse and anxiety: chronic ethanol intake increases hypothalamic GAL mRNA; high levels of stress increase GAL release in the central amygdala. The coding sequence of the galanin gene, GAL, is highly conserved and a functional(More)
BACKGROUND Associations between a functional polymorphism in the serotonin transporter gene and amygdala activation have been found in healthy, depressed, and anxious adults. This study explored these gene-brain associations in adolescents by examining predictive effects of serotonin transporter gene variants (S and L(G) allele carriers vs. L(A) allele(More)
Oxidative stress has been implicated in the pathogenesis of stroke, traumatic brain injuries, and neurodegenerative diseases affecting both neuronal and glial cells in the CNS. In this study we have demonstrated that reactive oxygen species (ROS) dramatically induce the expression of two neuropeptide genes, the opioid proenkephalin (pENK) and the(More)
Transient reductions in serotonin levels during tryptophan depletion (TD) are thought to impair reward processing in healthy volunteers, while another facet of the serotonergic system, the serotonin transporter (5-HTTLPR) short allele polymorphism, is implicated in augmented processing of aversive stimuli. We examined the impact and interactions of TD and(More)
The alpha 2-adrenergic receptors (alpha2-AR) mediate physiological effects of epinephrine and norepinephrine. Three genes encode alpha2-AR subtypes carrying common functional polymorphisms (ADRA2A Asn251Lys, ADRA2B Ins/Del301-303 and ADRA2C Ins/Del322-325). We genotyped these functional markers plus a panel of single nucleotide polymorphisms evenly spaced(More)
The newly synthesized 14-alkoxymetopon derivatives, 14-methoxymetopon, 14-ethoxymetopon, 14-methoxy-5-methyl-morphinone, exhibit high affinity for the naloxone binding sites in rat brain. A substantial decrease in affinity was observed, in the presence of NaCl indicating a high degree of agonist activity. All three 14-alkoxymetopon derivatives displayed(More)
Genotype at the 5′ promoter region (5-HTTLPR) of the serotonin transporter has been implicated in moderating the effects of acute tryptophan depletion on neurocognitive functioning. Acute tryptophan depletion has been associated with the processing of fear-relevant cues, such as emotional expressions, but the effect of genotype at the 5-HTTLPR has not been(More)
The regulation of adenylyl cyclase by opioid receptor types was characterized in the rat nucleus accumbens, a brain region that is involved in the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse, and in the caudate putamen, a region not implicated in drug reinforcement. Both mu and delta opioid ligands inhibited adenylyl cyclase activity in the nucleus accumbens and(More)
The opioid-like neuropeptide nociceptin/orphanin FQ (N/OFQ) and its receptor (NOP) are expressed in the substantia nigra (SN), a brain area containing dopamine neurons that degenerate in Parkinson's disease. Endogenous N/OFQ facilitates nigral glutamate release and inhibits nigrostriatal dopamine transmission and motor behavior. Here, we present evidence(More)