Learn More
The development of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) response to stress is influenced by the early mother-infant relationship. In rats, early handling (brief daily mother-offspring separations) attenuates the adult offspring's HPA and fear responses compared to both nonhandling (no separations) and maternal separation (prolonged daily separations).(More)
Epidemiological research has emphasized that adolescence is associated with some temperamental and behavioral traits that are typical of this age and that might substantially contribute to both psychological and psychobiological vulnerability. The contribution of the important developmental rearrangements in neurobiological and neuroendocrinological(More)
A “gateway” function toward substance abuse has been suggested for early tobacco smoking. Nicotine actually represents an easily available drug for human adolescents, who are very likely to use a number of different psychoactive agents. Surprisingly, the psychobiological factors involved in this age-related willingness have been poorly investigated. In(More)
Environmental stimulation throughout development adjusts the neurobehavioral systems involved in learning, memory and defensive responses. Environment-mediated phenotypic plasticity can be considered from two different, yet complementary, viewpoints. On one hand, the possibility that environmental interventions protect against the effects of genetic and/or(More)
Developmental plasticity of HPA and fear responses in rats has been proposed to be mediated by environment-dependent variation in active maternal care. Here, we review this maternal mediation hypothesis based on the postnatal manipulation literature and on our own recent research in rats. We show that developmental plasticity of HPA and fear responses in(More)
People are very likely to start psychoactive drug use during adolescence, an earlier onset being associated with a higher risk of developing addiction later in life. In experiment I, Pre- (postnatal day (pnd) 23–35), Mid- (pnd 36–48), or Post- (pnd 49–61) adolescent mice underwent a restricted-drinking period (2 h/day for 12 days), one bottle containing(More)
Postnatal manipulations such as brief (early handling, EH) and long, daily mother-offspring separations (maternal separation, MS) in rats are used to study the mechanisms underlying developmental plasticity of stress and fear responses, and to model stress-related disorders in humans and in non-human animals. Current evidence suggests that, compared to(More)
A disruption in normal brain development has been hypothesized to contribute to the aetiology of major psychiatric disorders. According to the ‘double-hit’ hypothesis, mutant genes-based deviations, associated with specific environmental insults during brain development, may result in neurobehavioural disturbances. The existence of age windows of(More)
Recently developed bioinspired robots imitate their live counterparts in both aspect and functionality. Nevertheless, whether these devices can be integrated within the ecological niche inspiring their design is seldom tested experimentally. An elemental research question concerns the feasibility of modulating spontaneous behaviour of animal systems through(More)
In this article, we refer to an original opinion paper written by Prof. Frank Beach in 1950 (“The Snark was a Boojum”). In his manuscript, Beach explicitly criticised the field of comparative psychology because of the disparity between the original understanding of comparativeness and its practical overly specialised implementation. Specialisation(More)