Journals Current Topics in Behavioral N...

Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Adrian Thorogood
Population neuroscience aims to advance our understanding of how genetic and environmental factors influence brain development and brain health over the life span, by integrating genomics, epidemiology, and neuroscience at population scale. This big data approach depends on data sharing strategies at both the micro- and macro-level, as well as attention to effective data management and protection of participant privacy. At the micro-level, researchers participate in international consortia that support collaboration, standards, and data sharing...
March 21, 2024: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Marco Helbich, Yi Zeng, Abeed Sarker
People's mental health is intertwined with the social environment in which they reside. This chapter explores approaches for quantifying the area-level social environment, focusing specifically on socioeconomic deprivation and social fragmentation. We discuss census data and administrative units, egocentric and ecometric approaches, neighborhood audits, social media data, and street view-based assessments. We close the chapter by discussing possible paths forward from associations between social environments and health to establishing causality, including longitudinal research designs and time-series social environmental indices...
March 8, 2024: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Howard C Becker, Marcelo F Lopez
The development of animal models that demonstrate excessive levels of alcohol consumption has played an important role in advancing our knowledge about neurobiological underpinnings and environmental circumstances that engender such maladaptive behavior. The use of these preclinical models has also provided valuable opportunities for discovering new and novel therapeutic targets that may be useful in the treatment of alcohol use disorder (AUD). While no single model can fully capture the complexities of AUD, the goal is to develop animal models that closely approximate characteristics of heavy alcohol drinking in humans to enhance their translational value and utility...
February 11, 2024: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Jonathan T Cavanagh
The last two decades have seen a flourishing of research into the immunobiology of psychiatric phenotypes, in particular major depressive disorder. Both preclinical and clinical data have highlighted pathways and possible mechanisms that might link changes in immunobiology, most especially inflammation, to clinically relevant behaviour. From a therapeutics perspective, a major impetus has been the action of Biologics, often monoclonal antibodies, that target specific cytokines acting as "molecular scalpels" helping to uncover the actions of those proteins...
December 20, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Patrick Bach, Falk Kiefer
Preclinical studies suggest that physiological learning processes are similar to changes observed in addiction at the molecular, neuronal and structural levels. Based on the importance of classical and instrumental conditioning in the development and maintenance of addictive disorders, many have suggested cue-exposure-based extinction training of conditioned, drug-related responses as a potential treatment of addiction. Recently, the development of virtual reality-assisted cue-exposure treatment has put forward new approaches to extinction training...
December 12, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Peter Theiss, Francesco G Pucci, Konstantin V Slavin
Surgically implanted neurostimulation devices for the treatment of depression have been studied for the last three decades. While the surgical risk associated with these treatment approaches clearly limits their use to the most severely impacted depressed patients, they offer a unique opportunity to better understand the impact of relatively localized alteration of neural activity in patient groups. As a result, these approaches provide a strict test of the role of individual neural structures or networks in mechanistic models of depression...
December 12, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Marie A Doyle, Anne Taylor, Danny G Winder
An implicit tenet of the alcohol use disorder (AUD) research field is that knowledge of how alcohol interacts with the brain is critical to the development of an understanding of vulnerability to AUD and treatment approaches. Gaining this understanding requires the mapping of brain function critical to specific components of this heterogeneous disorder. Early approaches in humans and animal models focused on the determination of specific brain regions sensitive to alcohol action and their participation in AUD-relevant behaviors...
December 12, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Verica Milivojevic, Rajita Sinha
Alcohol use disorder is highly prevalent and high risk of relapse remains a significant treatment challenge. Therefore, the utility of human laboratory models of relapse to further the understanding of psychobiological mechanisms that precipitate relapse risk and allow testing of novel interventions could be of benefit in expediting the development of effective treatments to target high relapse risk. Stress is a risk factor for the development of AUD and for relapse, and furthermore, chronic alcohol use leads to adaptations in central and peripheral stress biology...
November 21, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Robert Hitzemann, Angela R Ozburn, Denesa Lockwood, Tamara J Phillips
Animal genetic models have and will continue to provide important new information about the behavioral and physiological adaptations associated with alcohol use disorder (AUD). This chapter focuses on two models, ethanol preference and drinking in the dark (DID), their usefulness in interrogating brain gene expression data and the relevance of the data obtained to interpret AUD-related GWAS and TWAS studies. Both the animal and human data point to the importance for AUD of changes in synaptic transmission (particularly glutamate and GABA transmission), of changes in the extracellular matrix (specifically including collagens, cadherins and protocadherins) and of changes in neuroimmune processes...
November 21, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Don Chamith Halahakoon, Michael Browning
Dopaminergic mechanisms are a plausible treatment target for patients with clinical depression but are relatively underexplored in conventional antidepressant medications. There is continuing interest in the potential antidepressant effects of the dopamine receptor agonist, pramipexole, with data from both case series and controlled trials indicating that this agent may produce benefit for patients with difficult-to-treat depression. Pramipexole's therapeutic utility in depression is likely to be expressed through alterations in reward mechanisms which are strongly influenced by dopamine pathways and are known to function abnormally in depressed patients...
November 21, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
David Antoine Lachmansingh, Aonghus Lavelle, John F Cryan, Gerard Clarke
In the treatment of depressive disorders, conventional antidepressant therapy has been the mainstay of clinical management, along with well-established nonpharmacological interventions such as various kinds of psychotherapy. Over the last 2 decades, there has been considerable interest in the role of the gastrointestinal system and its microbiota on brain function, behavior, and mental health. Components of what is referred to as the microbiota-gut-brain axis have been uncovered, and further research has elicited functional capabilities such as "gut-brain modules...
November 15, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Jean-Baptiste Belge, Philip van Eijndhoven, Peter C R Mulders
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) remains the most potent antidepressant treatment available for patients with major depressive disorder (MDD). ECT is highly effective, achieving a response rate of 70-80% and a remission rate of 50-60% even in treatment-resistant patients. The underlying mechanisms of ECT are not fully understood, although several hypotheses have been proposed, including the monoamine hypothesis, anticonvulsive hypothesis, neuroplastic effects, and immunomodulatory properties. In this paper, we provide an overview of magnetic resonance imaging evidence that addresses the neuroplastic changes that occur after ECT at the human systems level and elaborate further on ECTs potent immunomodulatory properties...
November 15, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Katie Kamenish, Emma S J Robinson
Pharmacological treatments that improve mood were first identified serendipitously, but more than half a century later, how these drugs induce their antidepressant effects remains largely unknown. With the help of animal models, a detailed understanding of their pharmacological targets and acute and chronic effects on brain chemistry and neuronal function has been achieved, but it remains to be elucidated how these effects translate to clinical efficacy. Whilst the field has been dominated by the monoamine and neurotrophic hypotheses, the idea that the maladaptive cognitive process plays a critical role in the development and perpetuation of mood disorders has been discussed since the 1950s...
November 14, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Trevor Sharp, Helen Collins
SSRIs are one of the most widely used drug therapies in primary care and psychiatry, and central to the management of the most common mental health problems in today's society. Despite this, SSRIs suffer from a slow onset of therapeutic effect and relatively poor efficacy as well as adverse effects, with recent concerns being focused on a disabling SSRI discontinuation syndrome. The mechanism underpinning their therapeutic effect has long shifted away from thinking that SSRIs act simply by increasing 5-HT in the synapse...
November 14, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
D J Nutt, J M Peill, B Weiss, K Godfrey, R L Carhart-Harris, D Erritzoe
Psychedelic drugs such as psilocybin and ketamine are returning to clinical research and intervention across several disorders including the treatment of depression. This chapter focusses on psychedelics that specifically target the 5-HT2A receptor such as psilocybin and DMT. These produce plasma-concentration related psychological effects such as hallucinations and out of body experiences, insightful and emotional breakthroughs as well as mystical-type experiences. When coupled with psychological support, effects can produce a rapid improvement in mood among people with depression that can last for months...
November 14, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Luke A Jelen, Allan H Young, Mitul A Mehta
Opioid receptors are widely expressed in the brain, and the opioid system has a key role in modulating mood, reward processing and stress responsivity. There is mounting evidence that the endogenous opioid system may be dysregulated in depression and that drug treatments targeting mu, delta and kappa opioid receptors may show antidepressant potential. The mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of opioid system engagement are complex and likely multi-factorial. This chapter explores various pathways through which the modulation of the opioid system may influence depression...
November 4, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Philip J Cowen
The widespread adoption of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) as first-line pharmacological treatments in the management of clinical depression transformed the landscape of drug therapy for this condition. SSRIs are safer and better tolerated than the tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) that they replaced. However, they have limitations that may have placed a ceiling on the expectations of first-line pharmacological treatment. Notable problems with SSRIs include induction of anxiety on treatment initiation, delayed onset of significant therapeutic effect, sexual dysfunction, sleep disturbance and overall modest efficacy...
November 4, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Sara Costi
Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a leading cause of disability worldwide. Conventional antidepressant treatment is characterised by a significant time to onset of therapeutic action (approximately 2 weeks) and fails to achieve a stable remission of symptoms in one-third of subjects with MDD. In the last 20 years the discovery of antidepressant effects of the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist ketamine as a rapid acting (within hours) and sustained (up to 7 days) antidepressant has represented a major paradigm shift in the field...
November 4, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Jonas Schimmer, Ryan Patwell, Stephanie K├╝ppers, Valery Grinevich
The hypothalamic neuropeptide oxytocin (OT) is well known for its prosocial, anxiolytic, and ameliorating effects on various psychiatric conditions, including alcohol use disorder (AUD). In this chapter, we will first introduce the basic neurophysiology of the OT system and its interaction with other neuromodulatory and neurotransmitter systems in the brain. Next, we provide an overview over the current state of research examining the effects of acute and chronic alcohol exposure on the OT system as well as the effects of OT system manipulation on alcohol-related behaviors in rodents and humans...
September 12, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
Richard A Bryant
As discussed in this chapter, there have been enormous advances in our understanding of how anxiety disorders develop, are maintained, and can be treated. Many of these advances have been the result of translational studies using fear conditioning and extinction models. Despite these successes, we recognize, as a field, that there are important limitations in the extent to which extinction can explain how anxiety disorders and behaviors remit. Clinically speaking, the outstanding challenge for treatment of anxiety disorders is to improve the current suboptimal success rates...
September 6, 2023: Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences
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