Patricia Boksa

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Epidemiological studies with human populations indicate associations between maternal infection during pregnancy and increased risk in offspring for central nervous system (CNS) disorders including schizophrenia, autism and cerebral palsy. Since 2000, a large number of studies have used rodent models of systemic prenatal infection or prenatal immune(More)
Dopamine supersensitivity occurs in schizophrenia and other psychoses, and after hippocampal lesions, antipsychotics, ethanol, amphetamine, phencyclidine, gene knockouts of Dbh (dopamine beta-hydroxylase), Drd4 receptors, Gprk6 (G protein-coupled receptor kinase 6), Comt (catechol-O-methyltransferase), or Th-/-, DbhTh/+ (tyrosine hydroxylase), and in rats(More)
Maternal infections with bacterial or viral agents during pregnancy are associated with an increased incidence of schizophrenia in the offspring at adulthood although little is known about the mechanism by which maternal infection might affect fetal neurodevelopment. Exposure of pregnant rodents to the bacterial endotoxin, lipopolysaccharide (LPS), results(More)
Polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (poly I:C) is a synthetic double-stranded RNA that is used experimentally to model viral infections in vivo. Previous studies investigating the inflammatory properties of this agent in rodents demonstrated that it is a potent pyrogen. However, the mechanisms underlying this response have not been fully elucidated. In the(More)
Epidemiological evidence indicates a higher incidence of pregnancy and birth complications among individuals who later develop schizophrenia, a disorder linked to alterations in mesolimbic dopamine (DA) function. Two birth complications usually included in these epidemiological studies, and still frequently encountered in the general population, are birth(More)
An increased incidence of schizophrenia has been associated with several perinatal insults, most notably maternal infection during pregnancy and perinatal hypoxia. This study used a rat model to directly test if maternal exposure to bacterial endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) during pregnancy alters behaviors relevant to schizophrenia, in offspring at(More)
Maternal infection during pregnancy is a risk factor for some psychiatric illnesses of neurodevelopmental origin such as schizophrenia and autism. In experimental animals, behavioral and neuropathological outcomes relevant to schizophrenia have been observed in offspring of infected dams. However, the type of infectious agent used and gestational age at(More)
Evidence from animal studies suggests that a period of anoxia to the fetus, a consequence common to many birth complications, results in long-term alterations in ventral mesencephalic dopamine function. Long-term functional changes in these dopamine neurons, in particular those that innervate the nucleus accumbens, also occur when animals are repeatedly(More)
The objective of this review is to identify a target or biomarker of altered neurochemical sensitivity that is common to the many animal models of human psychoses associated with street drugs, brain injury, steroid use, birth injury, and gene alterations. Psychosis in humans can be caused by amphetamine, phencyclidine, steroids, ethanol, and brain lesions(More)
Prepulse inhibition (PPI) of the acoustic startle response (ASR) is a form of sensorimotor gating, defined as an inhibition of the startle response when a low intensity stimulus, the prepulse, precedes the startling stimulus. Deficits in PPI have been reported in schizophrenia and other psychiatric/neurological disorders, and correlate with symptom severity(More)