Sheraz Khoja

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Our laboratory is investigating ivermectin (IVM) and other members of the avermectin family as new pharmaco-therapeutics to prevent and/or treat alcohol use disorders (AUDs). Earlier work found that IVM significantly reduced ethanol intake in mice and that this effect likely reflects IVM's ability to modulate ligand-gated ion channels. We hypothesized that(More)
Purinergic P2X receptors are a family of ligand-gated ion channels gated by extracellular adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP). Of the seven P2X subtypes, P2X4 receptors (P2X4Rs) are richly expressed in the brain, yet their role in behavioral organization remains poorly understood. In this study, we examined the behavioral responses of P2X4R heterozygous (HZ)(More)
Purinergic ionotropic P2X receptors are a family of cation-permeable channels that bind extracellular adenosine 5'-triphosphate. In particular, convergent lines of evidence have recently highlighted P2X(4) receptors as a potentially critical target in the regulation of multiple nervous and behavioural functions, including pain, neuroendocrine regulation and(More)
The high rate of therapeutic failure in the management of alcohol use disorders (AUDs) underscores the urgent need for novel and effective strategies that can deter ethanol consumption. Recent findings from our group showed that ivermectin (IVM), a broad-spectrum anthelmintic with high tolerability and optimal safety profile in humans and animals,(More)
Purinergic P2X4 receptors (P2X4Rs) belong to the P2X superfamily of ion channels regulated by ATP. We recently demonstrated that P2X4R knockout (KO) mice exhibited deficits in sensorimotor gating, social interaction, and ethanol drinking behavior. Dopamine (DA) dysfunction may underlie these behavioral changes, but there is no direct evidence for P2X4Rs'(More)
P2X receptors (P2XRs) are a family of cation-permeable ligand-gated ion channels activated by synaptically released extracellular adenosine 5′-triphosphate. The P2X4 subtype is abundantly expressed in the central nervous system and is sensitive to low intoxicating ethanol concentrations. Genetic meta-analyses identified the p2rx4 gene as a candidate gene(More)
The present investigation tested the role of ATP-activated P2X7 receptors (P2X7Rs) in alcohol-induced brain damage using a model that combines intragastric (iG) ethanol feeding and high fat diet in C57BL/6J mice (Hybrid). The Hybrid paradigm caused increased levels of pro-inflammatory markers, changes in microglia and astrocytes, reduced levels of neuronal(More)
UNLABELLED P2X4 receptors are ATP-gated cation channels that are widely expressed in the nervous system. To identify P2X4 receptor-expressing cells, we generated BAC transgenic mice expressing tdTomato under the control of the P2X4 receptor gene (P2rx4). We found sparse populations of tdTomato-positive neurons in most brain areas with patterns that matched(More)
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