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J Korean Soc Biol Psychiatry. 2003 Jun;10(1):62-69. Korean. Original Article.
Shin KH , Kim SJ , Lee KJ , Shin SG , Shin YC , Lee MS .
Department of Pharmacology, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Psychiatry, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

Corticotropin-releasing factor(CRF) and neuropeptide Y(NPY) are known to play important roles in mediating stress responses and stress-related behavior. To elucidate the role of neuropeptides in response to the condition that had paired with traumatic event, we observed the changes of CRF and NPY by immunohistochemistry using a conditioned footshock paradigm. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were placed in a shuttle box and exposed to 20 pairings of a tone(< 70dB, 5sec) followed by a footshock(FS, 0.8mA, 1sec) over 60min. A second group was exposed to the tone-footshock pairings, returned to the homecage for 2days, and then reexposed to the test chamber and 20tones alone for 60min, prior to sacrifice. Control groups were : a) sacrificed without exposure to FS ; b) exposed to the tone-footshock pairings and then sacrificed two days later ; or c) exposed to the chamber and tones alone, returned to the homecage for 2days and then reexposed to the chamber and 20tones over 60min prior to sacrifice. CRF was increased in animals exposed to FS or the aversive condition(context and tone) that had paired to FS in bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) compared to the control. NPY was increased by FS in amygdala and PVN, but the condition previously associated with FS results in slight increase only in amygdala area. These results suggest that the BNST appears to be the mostly involved neural circuit in response to explicit cues previously paired with footshock. Moreover, this study raise the possibility that increased CRF peptide in the BNST in response to re-exposure to the aversive condition may underlie, in part, the experience of conditioned fear-related anxiety behavior.

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