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The COMT (catechol-O-methyltransferase) gene has been linked to a spectrum of human phenotypes, including cognition, anxiety, pain sensitivity and psychosis. Doubts about its clinical impact exist, however, because of the complexity of human COMT polymorphism and clinical variability. We generated transgenic mice overexpressing a human COMT-Val polymorphism(More)
The negative affective symptoms of opiate withdrawal powerfully motivate drug-seeking behavior and may trigger relapse to heroin abuse. To date, no medications exist that effectively relieve the negative affective symptoms of opiate withdrawal. The corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) system has been hypothesized to mediate the motivational effects of drug(More)
Altered motivational processes might participate to the physiopathology of eating-related disorders. The endogenous opioid system is thought to mediate the hedonic properties of food intake. To assess the role for the micro-opioid receptor (MOR) pathway in the motivational properties of food intake, in the present study we tested wild-type and MOR-deficient(More)
Dysbindin has been implicated in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia, but little is known about how dysbindin affects neuronal function in the circuitry underlying psychosis and related behaviors. Using a dysbindin knockout line (dys(-/-)) derived from the natural dysbindin mutant Sandy mice, we have explored the role of dysbindin in dopamine signaling and(More)
Dysbindin-1 regulates D2-receptor trafficking and is implicated in schizophrenia and related cognitive abnormalities, but whether this molecular effect mediates the clinical manifestations of the disorder is unknown. We explored in dysbindin-1-deficient mice (dys-/-) (1) schizophrenia-related behaviors, (2) molecular and electrophysiological changes in(More)
The opiate withdrawal syndrome is a severe stressor that powerfully triggers addictive drug intake. However, no treatment yet exists that effectively relieves opiate withdrawal distress and spares stress-coping abilities. The corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) system mediates the stress response, but its role in opiate withdrawal distress and bodily(More)
BDNF regulates components of cognitive processes and has been implicated in psychiatric disorders. Here we report that genetic overexpression of the BDNF mature isoform (BDNF-tg) in female mice impaired working memory functions while sparing components of fear conditioning. BDNF-tg mice also displayed reduced breeding efficiency, higher anxiety-like scores,(More)
Intranasal administration of oxytocin (OXT) might be a promising new adjunctive therapy for mental disorders characterized by social behavioral alterations such as autism and schizophrenia. Despite promising initial studies in humans, it is not yet clear the specificity of the behavioral effects induced by chronic intranasal OXT and if chronic intranasal(More)
Cognitive dysfunction is a core feature of schizophrenia. Growing evidence indicates that a wide variety of genetic mutations and polymorphisms impact cognition and may thus be implicated in various aspects of this mental disorder. Despite differences between human and rodent brain structure and function, genetic mouse models have contributed critical(More)