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1.  Impact of Social Status and Antidepressant Treatment on Neurogenesis in the Baboon Hippocampus 
Neuropsychopharmacology  2014;39(8):1861-1871.
Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is critically implicated in rodent models of stress and anxiety as well as behavioral effects of antidepressants. Whereas similar factors such as psychiatric disorder and antidepressant administration are correlated with hippocampal volume in humans, the relationship between these factors and adult neurogenesis is less well understood. To better bridge the gap between rodent and human physiology, we examined the numbers of proliferating neural precursors and immature cells in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) as well as in vivo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-estimated whole hippocampal volume in eight socially dominant- or subordinate-like (SL) baboons administered the antidepressant fluoxetine or vehicle. SL baboons had lower numbers of proliferating cells and immature neurons than socially dominant-like baboons. Fluoxetine treatment was associated with a larger whole hippocampal volume but surprisingly resulted in lower numbers of immature neurons. These findings are the first to indicate that adult neurogenesis in the baboon hippocampal DG may be functionally relevant in the context of social stress and mechanisms of antidepressant action.
PMCID: PMC4059894  PMID: 24518288
adult neurogenesis; dentate gyrus; antidepressants; social stress
2.  High-Throughput Automated Phenotyping of Two Genetic Mouse Models of Huntington's Disease 
PLoS Currents  2013;5:ecurrents.hd.124aa0d16753f88215776fba102ceb29.
Phenotyping with traditional behavioral assays constitutes a major bottleneck in the primary screening, characterization, and validation of genetic mouse models of disease, leading to downstream delays in drug discovery efforts. We present a novel and comprehensive one-stop approach to phenotyping, the PhenoCube™. This system simultaneously captures the cognitive performance, motor activity, and circadian patterns of group-housed mice by use of home-cage operant conditioning modules (IntelliCage) and custom-built computer vision software. We evaluated two different mouse models of Huntington’s Disease (HD), the R6/2 and the BACHD in the PhenoCube™ system. Our results demonstrated that this system can efficiently capture and track alterations in both cognitive performance and locomotor activity patterns associated with these disease models. This work extends our prior demonstration that PhenoCube™ can characterize circadian dysfunction in BACHD mice and shows that this system, with the experimental protocols used, is a sensitive and efficient tool for a first pass high-throughput screening of mouse disease models in general and mouse models of neurodegeneration in particular.
PMCID: PMC3710674  PMID: 23863947
3.  Volumetric Correlates of Spatiotemporal Working and Recognition Memory Impairment in Aged Rhesus Monkeys 
Cerebral Cortex (New York, NY)  2010;21(7):1559-1573.
Spatiotemporal and recognition memory are affected by aging in humans and macaque monkeys. To investigate whether these deficits are coupled with atrophy of memory-related brain regions, T1-weighted magnetic resonance images were acquired and volumes of the cerebrum, ventricles, prefrontal cortex (PFC), calcarine cortex, hippocampus, and striatum were quantified in young and aged rhesus monkeys. Subjects were tested on a spatiotemporal memory procedure (delayed response [DR]) that requires the integrity of the PFC and a medial temporal lobe-dependent recognition memory task (delayed nonmatching to sample [DNMS]). Region of interest analyses revealed that age inversely correlated with striatal, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), and anterior cingulate cortex volumes. Hippocampal volume predicted acquisition of the DR task. Striatal volume correlated with DNMS acquisition, whereas total prefrontal gray matter, prefrontal white matter, and dlPFC volumes each predicted DNMS accuracy. A regional covariance analysis revealed that age-related volumetric changes could be captured in a distributed network that was coupled with declining performance across delays on the DNMS task. This volumetric analysis adds to growing evidence that cognitive aging in primates arises from region-specific morphometric alterations distributed across multiple memory-related brain systems, including subdivisions of the PFC.
PMCID: PMC3116736  PMID: 21127015
age-related memory impairment; medial temporal lobe; MRI; prefrontal cortex; rhesus monkey

Results 1-3 (3)