Prescott T. Leach

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No selective antagonists for the effects of MDMA have yet been identified. The structurally-similar, naturally-occurring plant alkaloid nantenine (9,10-methylenedioxy-1,2 dimethoxyaporphine) may represent such a compound. To investigate the capacity of nantenine to block and/or reverse MDMA-induced hyperthermia, lethality, locomotor stimulation, and head(More)
Growth arrest and DNA damage-inducible β (Gadd45b) has been shown to be involved in DNA demethylation and may be important for cognitive processes. Gadd45b is abnormally expressed in subjects with autism and psychosis, two disorders associated with cognitive deficits. Furthermore, several high-throughput screens have identified Gadd45b as a candidate(More)
Addiction is a chronic disorder marked by long-lasting maladaptive changes in behavior and in reward system function. However, the factors that contribute to the behavioral and biological changes that occur with addiction are complex and go beyond reward. Addiction involves changes in cognitive control and the development of disruptive drug-stimuli(More)
Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) is a commonly inherited form of intellectual disability and one of the leading genetic causes for autism spectrum disorder. Clinical symptoms of FXS can include impaired cognition, anxiety, hyperactivity, social phobia, and repetitive behaviors. FXS is caused by a CGG repeat mutation which expands a region on the X chromosome(More)
Metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (mGluR1) antagonists interfere with learning and memory; however, their role in motor function is not well elucidated despite their abundance in brain areas implicated in the control of movement. Here, the effects of mGluR1 antagonism on movement, coordination, and motor learning were investigated. JNJ16259685, a selective(More)
Baseline and nicotine-modulated behaviors were assessed in mice harboring a null mutant allele of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunit gene α2 (Chrna2). Homozygous Chrna2(-/-) mice are viable, show expected sex and Mendelian genotype ratios, and exhibit no gross neuroanatomical abnormalities. A broad range of behavioral tests designed to(More)
More than a hundred de novo single gene mutations and copy-number variants have been implicated in autism, each occurring in a small subset of cases. Mutant mouse models with syntenic mutations offer research tools to gain an understanding of the role of each gene in modulating biological and behavioral phenotypes relevant to autism. Knockout, knockin and(More)
Acute nicotine enhances hippocampus-dependent learning through nicotine binding to β2-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), but it is unclear if nicotine is targeting processes involved in short-term memory (STM) leading to a strong long-term memory (LTM) or directly targeting LTM. In addition, the molecular mechanisms involved in the(More)
NMDA glutamate receptors (NMDARs) and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are both involved in learning and synaptic plasticity. Increasing evidence suggests processes mediated by these receptors may interact to modulate learning; however, little is known about the neural substrates involved in these interactive processes. The present studies(More)
Fragile X syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by mild-to-severe cognitive deficits. The complete absence of Fmr1 and its protein product in the mouse model of fragile X (Fmr1 KO) provides construct validity. A major conundrum in the field is the remarkably normal performance of Fmr1 mice on cognitive tests in most reports. One(More)