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Serotonin 2A receptor function and depression-like behavior in rats model of hypothyroidism

Abstract

Hypothyroidism causes somatic, psychosocial and affective psychosis, including depression-like behaviors. In this study, (hypothyroidism group; HP group) adult male Sprague Dawley (SD) rats were induced to hypothyroidism after 5 weeks of exposure to 0.05% propylthiouracil (PTU) in potable water, control animals (CON group) were given the same amount of water. The following behavioral experiments were conducted, respectively: open-field test (OFT), forced swimming test (FST), tail suspension test (TST). TT\(_{3}\) and TT\(_{4}\) levels were measured after the behavior tests and the expression levels of 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor and 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor proteins were analyzed in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex. The level of TT\(_{3}\) and TT\(_{4}\) in the HP group rats was much lower than that in the CON group. The hypothyroid rats also showed weight loss, much longer immobility time in tail suspension test and forced swimming test. Besides, 5 weeks of PTU administration was associated with significantly decreased expression levels of 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor and 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor proteins compared with control group, which were significantly negatively correlated with immobility time in FST and TST. In conclusion, our results suggest that hypothyroidism induces depressive behaviors through the influence of the serotonin system, and the decreased expression of the 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor is an important cause of the depressive behaviors in hypothyroidism.

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All data generated in this study are included in this paper.

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Funding

This work was supported by the the Nature Science Foundation of Liaoning Province of China (No. 2019-ZD-0620).

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ZCJ, JEL, PPN, FZ and YZW performed in the experiments. ZCJ and JEL analyzed the data and wrote the manuscript. JY and MZH revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Correspondence to Jing Yu or Mengzi He.

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Communicated by Sreedharan Sajikumar.

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Jin, Z., Ling, J., Yu, J. et al. Serotonin 2A receptor function and depression-like behavior in rats model of hypothyroidism. Exp Brain Res 239, 2435–2444 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00221-021-06129-1

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Keywords

  • Hypothyroidism
  • 5-HT\(_{2A}\) receptor
  • Depression
  • Forced swimming test
  • Tail suspension test