Sustained action of developmental ethanol exposure on the cortisol response to stress in zebrafish larvae and adults.
e0124488 - ?
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BACKGROUND: Ethanol exposure during pregnancy is one of the leading causes of preventable birth defects, leading to a range of symptoms collectively known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. More moderate levels of prenatal ethanol exposure lead to a range of behavioural deficits including aggression, poor social interaction, poor cognitive performance and increased likelihood of addiction in later life. Current theories suggest that adaptation in the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and neuroendocrine systems contributes to mood alterations underlying behavioural deficits and vulnerability to addiction. In using zebrafish (Danio rerio), the aim is to determine whether developmental ethanol exposure provokes changes in the hypothalamo-pituitary-interrenal (HPI) axis (the teleost equivalent of the HPA), as it does in mammalian models, therefore opening the possibilities of using zebrafish to elucidate the mechanisms involved, and to test novel therapeutics to alleviate deleterious symptoms. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: The results showed that developmental exposure to ambient ethanol, 20mM-50mM 1-9 days post fertilisation, had immediate effects on the HPI, markedly reducing the cortisol response to air exposure stress, as measured by whole body cortisol content. This effect was sustained in adults 6 months later. Morphology, growth and locomotor activity of the animals were unaffected, suggesting a specific action of ethanol on the HPI. In this respect the data are consistent with mammalian results, although they contrast with the higher corticosteroid stress response reported in rats after developmental ethanol exposure. The mechanisms that underlie the specific sensitivity of the HPI to ethanol require elucidation.
AuthorsBaiamonte, M; Brennan, CH; Vinson, GP
- College Publications