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Papers of the Week

Papers: 27 Jan 2024 - 2 Feb 2024

2024 Jan

J Neurosci Res




Dorsoventral hippocampus distinctly modulates visceral sensitivity and anxiety behaviors in male IBS-like rats.


Lin W, Zhou Y, Liu Y, Liu C, Lin M, Tang Y, Chen A, Wu B, Lin C


Accumulating evidences suggest dysfunctions in the hippocampus are associated with chronic pain. Nevertheless, the role of hippocampal circuitry in pain memories and emotional responses is not yet fully understood. In this study, we utilized a comprehensive approach that combined electromyography (EMG), photochemical genetic techniques, and anxiety-related behavioral paradigms to investigate the involvement of dorsal hippocampus (DH) and ventral hippocampus (VH) in visceral sensitivity and anxiety behaviors in male rats. Our results demonstrated that IBS-like rats exhibited comorbid visceral hypersensitivity and anxiety, along with the number of activated neurons in the VH was higher than that in the DH. Manipulation of glutamatergic neurons in the hippocampus was identified as a crucial mechanism underlying the mediation of both visceral sensitivity and anxiety behaviors. Specifically, optogenetic activation of the DH induced both visceral hypersensitivity and anxiety, while activation of the VH induced anxiety but did not affect visceral sensitivity. Conversely, chemogenetic inhibition of the DH reduced both visceral hypersensitivity and anxiety, whereas inhibition of the VH alleviated anxiety but did not alleviate visceral hypersensitivity in IBS-like rats. Our study highlights the important role of early life stress in inducing visceral hypersensitivity and anxiety, and further elucidates the distinct functional contributions of the DH and VH to these behavioral changes. These findings provide a theoretical basis for the diagnosis and treatment of IBS, and suggest that targeting specific hippocampal neuron subtypes may represent a promising therapeutic approach.