Robyn Jane McQuaid

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Several prosocial behaviors may be influenced by the hormone oxytocin. In line with this perspective, the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) gene single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), rs53576, has been associated with a broad range of social behaviors. In this regard, the G allele of the OXTR SNP has been accompanied by beneficial attributes such as increased(More)
Beta-amyloid (Aβ) oligomers contribute to the pathophysiology of Alzheimer disease (AD), and metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) has been shown to act as a receptor for both Aβ oligomers and cellular prion proteins. Furthermore, the genetic deletion of mGluR5 in an APPswe/PS1ΔE9 mouse model of AD improves cognitive function and reduces Aβ plaques and(More)
Disturbances of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) signalling have been implicated in the evolution of depression, which likely arises, in part, as a result of diminished synaptic plasticity. Predictably, given stressor involvement in depression, BDNF is affected by recent stressors as well as stressors such as neglect experienced in early life. The(More)
Stressful events have been implicated in the evolution of mood disorders. In addition to brain neurotransmitters and growth factors, the view has been offered that these disorders might be provoked by the activation of the inflammatory immune system as well as by de novo changes of inflammatory cytokines within the brain. The present review describes the(More)
A single-nucleotide polymorphism on the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR), rs53576, involving a guanine (G) to adenine (A) substitution has been associated with altered prosocial features. Specifically, individuals with the GG genotype (i.e. the absence of the polymorphism) display beneficial traits including enhanced trust, empathy and self-esteem. However,(More)
Stressors encountered during the juvenile period may have persistent effects on later behavioral and neurochemical functioning and may influence later responses to stressors. In the current investigation, we evaluated the influence of stressor exposure applied during the juvenile period (26-28 days of age) on anxiety-related behavior, plasma corticosterone(More)
Depression is accompanied by an array of neurobiological variations, including altered HPA axis activity, monoamine, growth factor and inflammatory immune functioning. In addition, a recent perspective has entertained the possible role for oxytocin in depressive disorders. Given the involvement of oxytocin in prosocial behaviors such as attachment,(More)
Environmental enrichment may protect against some of the adverse behavioural and biological effects of stressors. However, unlike the effects seen in some species, among male mice housed in groups, enrichment may alter social stability, encourage competition and aggression, and thus promote the establishment of a stressful environment. A potent psychosocial(More)
Stressful events promote several neuroendocrine and neurotransmitter changes that might contribute to the provocation of psychological and physical pathologies. Perhaps, because of its apparent ecological validity and its simple application, there has been increasing use of social defeat (resident-intruder) paradigms as a stressor. The frequency of(More)
Social defeat in mice is a potent stressor that promotes the development of depressive- and anxiety-like behaviours, as well as variations of neuroendocrine and brain neurotransmitter activity. Although environmental enrichment may protect against some of the adverse behavioural and biological effects of social defeat, it seems that, among male group-housed(More)