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The broad variation in phenotypes and severities within autism spectrum disorders suggests the involvement of multiple predisposing factors, interacting in complex ways with normal developmental courses and gradients. Identification of these factors, and the common developmental path into which they feed, is hampered by the large degrees of convergence from(More)
BACKGROUND Limited neurobiological data have implicated central arginine vasopressin in the pathobiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Based on twin, family genetic, and pharmacological studies, some forms of OCD are etiologically related to Tourette's syndrome. The role of arginine vasopressin and related compounds such as oxytocin in Tourette's(More)
OBJECTIVE To investigate group differences, the within-group distributions, and the clinical correlates of platelet serotonin (5-HT) levels in pervasive developmental disorders (PDD). METHOD Platelet 5-HT levels were measured in Dutch children and young adults, recruited from 2001 through 2003, with PDD (autism, Asperger's, and PDD-not otherwise specified(More)
BACKGROUND Depression has been linked to stress, memory deficits, and hypercortisolemia. However, the relationships between depression, hippocampal structure and function, and cortisol levels are unclear and the effects of antidepressant treatment on the measures are not well studied. METHODS Whole hippocampal volume, performance on verbal and visual(More)
To identify the fates that astroglial cells can attain in the postnatal brain, we generated mice carrying an inducible Cre recombinase (Cre-ER(T2)) controlled by the human GFAP promoter (hGFAP). In mice carrying the GCE (hGFAP-Cre-ER(T2)) transgene, OHT (4-hydroxy-tamoxifen) injections induced Cre recombination in astroglial cells at postnatal day 5 and(More)
Low levels of dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DbetaH) protein in the plasma or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) are associated with greater vulnerability to positive psychotic symptoms in several psychiatric disorders. DbetaH level is a stable, genetically controlled trait. DBH, the locus encoding DbetaH protein, is the major quantitative trait locus controlling plasma(More)
The tryptophan (TRP) depletion paradigm has been employed to investigate mood and behavioral effects of acutely lowering plasma TRP, and presumably brain serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]) levels through administration of a special diet and/or amino acid drink. Our goal was to test the assumption that a corresponding fall in central levels of TRP and(More)
Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) appears to play a role in the pathophysiology of a range of neuropsychiatric disorders, and serotonergic agents are of central importance in neuropharmacology. Genes encoding various components of the 5-HT system are being studied as risk factors in depression, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, aggression,(More)
BACKGROUND Preclinical research findings suggest that exposure to stress and concomitant hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis activation during early development can have permanent and potentially deleterious effects. A history of early-life abuse or neglect appears to increase risk for mood and anxiety disorders. Abnormal HPA response to stress(More)
Oxytocin (OT) is a neurosecretory nonapeptide synthesized in hypothalamic cells, which project to widely distributed sites in the CNS as well as the neurohypophysis. Central OT affects a variety of cognitive, grooming, affiliative, sexual, and reproductive behaviors in animals. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) includes a range of cognitive and behavioral(More)