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The application of electron microscopic immunolabeling techniques to the identification and analysis of degenerating processes in neural tissue has greatly enhanced the ability of researchers to examine apoptosis and other degenerative disease mechanisms. This is particularly true for the early stages of such mechanisms. Traditionally, degenerating(More)
The hippocampal formation (HF) is involved in modulating learning related to drug abuse. While HF-dependent learning is regulated by both endogenous opioids and estrogen, the interaction between these two systems is not well understood. The mossy fiber (MF) pathway formed by dentate gyrus (DG) granule cell axons is involved in some aspects of learning and(More)
Estrogens have direct effects on the brain areas controlling cognition. One of the most studied of these regions is the dorsal hippocampal formation, which governs the formation of spatial and episodic memories. In laboratory animals, most investigators report that estrogen enhances synaptic plasticity and improves performance on hippocampal-dependent(More)
Stress differentially affects hippocampal-dependent learning relevant to addiction and morphology in male and female rats. Mu opioid receptors (MORs), which are located in parvalbumin (PARV)-containing GABAergic interneurons and are trafficked in response to changes in the hormonal environment, play a critical role in promoting principal cell excitability(More)
Several of the best-studied sex differences in the mammalian brain are ascribed to the hormonal control of cell death. This conclusion is based primarily on correlations between pyknotic cell counts in development and counts of mature neurons in adulthood; the molecular mechanisms of hormone-regulated, sexually dimorphic cell death are unknown. We asked(More)
Estrogen receptor-alpha (ERalpha), estrogen receptor-beta (ERbeta), and progestin receptor (PR) immunoreactivities are localized to extranuclear sites in the rat hippocampal formation. Because rats and mice respond differently to estradiol treatment at a cellular level, the present study examined the distribution of ovarian hormone receptors in the dorsal(More)
Estradiol modulates dendritic spine morphology and synaptic protein expression in the rodent hippocampus, as well as hippocampal-dependent learning and memory. In the rat, these effects may be mediated through nongenomic steroid signaling such as estradiol activation of the Akt and LIM kinase (LIMK) pathways, in addition to genomic signaling involving(More)
Changes in hippocampal CA1 dendritic spine density and synaptic number across the estrous cycle in female rats correlate with increased hippocampal-dependent cognitive performance in a manner that is dependent on estrogen receptors (ERs). Two isoforms of the estrogen receptor, alpha and beta are present in the rat hippocampus and distinct effects on(More)
The sexually dimorphic population of dopamine neurons in the anteroventral periventricular nucleus of the preoptic region of the hypothalamus (AVPV) develops postnatally under the influence of testosterone, which is aromatized to estrogen. There are fewer dopaminergic neurons labeled with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in the male AVPV than the female, and sex(More)
Several sex differences in the nervous system depend on differential cell death during development in males and females. The anti-apoptotic protein, Bcl-2, promotes the survival of many types of neurons during development and in response to injury. To determine whether Bcl-2 might similarly control cell death in sexually dimorphic regions, we compared(More)