Structural and biochemical imaging reveals systemic LPS-induced changes in the rat brain

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Despite mounting evidence for the role of inflammation in Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), in vivo preclinical investigations of inflammation-induced negative affect using whole brain imaging modalities are scarce, precluding a valid model within which to evaluate pharmacological interventions. Here we used an E. coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-based model of inflammation-induced depressive signs in rats to explore brain changes using multimodal neuroimaging methods. During the acute phase of the LPS response (2 h post injection), prior to the emergence of a task-quantifiable depressive phenotype, striatal glutamine levels and splenial, retrosplenial, and peri-callosal hippocampal cortex volumes were greater than at baseline. LPS-induced depressive behaviors observed at 24 h, however, occurred concurrently with lower than control levels of striatal glutamine and a reversibility of volume expansion (i.e., shrinkage of splenial, retrosplenial, and peri-callosal hippocampal cortex to baseline volumes). In both striatum and hippocampus at 24 h, mRNA expression in LPS relative to control animals demonstrated alterations in enzymes and transporters regulating glutamine homeostasis. Collectively, the observed behavioral, in vivo structural and metabolic, and mRNA expression alterations suggest a critical role for astrocytic regulation of inflammation-induced depressive behaviors.

TidsskriftJournal of Neuroimmunology
StatusUdgivet - 2020
Eksternt udgivetJa

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