Find a new article from our group, published in Molecular Psychiatry, focused on the role of prefrontal microglial cells at modulating anhedonia-like behavior in mice.

Reductions of astroglia expressing glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) are consistently found in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) of patients with depression and in rodent chronic stress models. Here, we examine the consequences of PFC GFAP+ cell depletion and cell activity enhancement on depressive-like behaviors in rodents. Using viral expression of diphtheria toxin receptor in PFC GFAP+ cells, which allows experimental depletion of these cells following diphtheria toxin administration, we demonstrated that PFC GFAP+ cell depletion induced anhedonia-like behavior within 2 days and lasting up to 8 days, but no anxiety-like deficits. Conversely, activating PFC GFAP+ cell activity for 3 weeks using designer receptor exclusively activated by designer drugs (DREADDs) reversed chronic restraint stress-induced anhedonia-like deficits, but not anxiety-like deficits. Our results highlight a critical role of cortical astroglia in the development of anhedonia and further support the idea of targeting astroglia for the treatment of depression.

Congratulations to all authors:

S. A. Codeluppi, M. Xu, Y. Bansal, A.E. Lepack, V. Duric, M. Chow, J. Muir, R.C. Bagot, P. Licznerski, S.L. Wilber, G. Sanacora, E. Sibille. R.S. Duman, C. Pittenger, M. Banasr