Enriched environment increases spinophilin mRNA expression and spinophilin immunoreactive dendritic spines in hippocampus and cortex.
2010 (English)In: Neuroscience Letters, ISSN 0304-3940, E-ISSN 1872-7972, Vol. 476, no 2, 79-83 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Housing rodents in an enriched environment (EE) induces structural and functional plasticity in the adult brain, including increased dendritic sprouting and number of dendritic spines. However, the molecular mechanisms behind EE-induced brain plasticity remain largely unknown. Circadian rhythm plays an important role in memory processing but the neurobiological mechanisms of how circadian rhythm affects memory and brain plasticity remain controversial. In the current study, we studied the expression of spinophilin, a protein highly enriched in dendritic spines and involved in spine morphology and synaptic plasticity, to examine the effects of EE and circadian rhythm in rats housed in EE for different periods of time. Spinophilin mRNA expression was studied by in situ hybridization and the density of spinophilin immunoreactive puncta was quantified after immunohistochemical staining. Compared to rats living in a deprived environment (DE), we found a transient increase in the density of spinophilin immunoreactive puncta in hippocampus and cortex after 1 week of EE housing and persistent elevations of spinophilin mRNA expression during 1-4 weeks of environmental enrichment. Increased spinophilin expression was found during the light phase of the diurnal cycle, but not the dark phase. Thus, enriched housing altered the diurnal variation in spinophilin mRNA expression, suggesting that circadian modulation is likely to be important for experience dependent plasticity. The current results suggest a possible role for spinophilin in neuronal plasticity induced by environmental enrichment, but further studies are needed to establish a cause-effect relation.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier , 2010. Vol. 476, no 2, 79-83 p.
Enriched environment, Circadian rhythm, Neuronal plasticity, Synaptogenesis, Spinophilin, Rats
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-35684DOI: 10.1016/j.neulet.2010.04.007PubMedID: 20385205OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-35684DiVA: diva2:346192