Clara Monteiro

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Dopamine plays an important role in several forms of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus, a crucial brain structure for working memory (WM) functioning. In this study, we evaluated whether the working-memory impairment characteristic of animal models of chronic pain is dependent on hippocampal dopaminergic signaling. To address this issue, we implanted(More)
The insular cortex (IC) contains the primary sensory cortex for oral chemosensation including gustation, and its integrity is required for appropriate control of feeding behavior. However, it remains unknown whether the role of this brain area in food selection relies on the presence of peripheral taste input. Using multielectrode recordings, we found that(More)
Somatosensory deep dorsal horn spinal neurons were previously shown to present in vitro a bistable state of activity in which a fixed firing rate is maintained over prolonged periods in the absence of stimulation. Those periods of enhanced spinal spontaneous discharge may play a role in the genesis or maintenance of hyperalgesic states, where episodes of(More)
The paired-type homeodomain transcription factor Prrxl1 (also known as Drg11) is a key regulator of the differentiation and survival of dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and spinal nociceptive neurons in pre- and perinatal stages. Prrxl1(-/-) mice exhibit abnormalities in DRG-spinal projections, defects in superficial dorsal horn structure and neurochemistry, and(More)
Despite the large number of studies addressing how prolonged painful stimulation affects brain functioning, there are only a handful of studies aimed at uncovering if persistent conditions of reduced pain perception would also result in brain plasticity. Permanent hypoalgesia induced by neonatal injection of capsaicin or carrageenan has already been shown(More)
Testing the clinical efficacy of drugs that also have important side effects on locomotion needs to be properly designed in order to avoid erroneous identification of positive effects when the evaluation depends on motor-related tests. One such example is the evaluation of analgesic role of drugs that act on dopaminergic receptors, since the pain perception(More)
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