Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Cicardian System Suffers And Protects From Prenatal Cocaine Exposure

Date:
July 13, 2007
Source:
Boston University
Summary:
Researchers have shown that prenatal cocaine exposure in zebrafish (which share the majority of the same genes with humans) can alter neuronal development and acutely dysregulate the expression of circadian genes and those affecting melatonin signaling, growth and neurotransmission. The circadian factors, including the principal circadian hormone melatonin, can attenuate the prenatal effects of cocaine.

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have shown that prenatal cocaine exposure in zebrafish (which share the majority of the same genes with humans) can alter neuronal development and acutely dysregulate the expression of circadian genes and those affecting melatonin signaling, growth and neurotransmission.

The circadian factors, including the principal circadian hormone melatonin, can attenuate the prenatal effects of cocaine.

Tens of thousands of babies that have been exposed to cocaine in utero are born in the United States each year.

Multiple human studies suggest there are significant changes in brain development and subsequent brain function of children of drug-addicted parents. However, the extent of the damage and whether it is in part due to confounding environmental, genetic or physiological factors remains controversial.

Using a specifically developed zebrafish, the researchers, Drs. Eva Shang and Irina Zhdanova, found that prenatal exposure to cocaine, in concentrations comparable to those experienced by human embryos, altered the neuronal development in zebrafish and acutely changed embryonic expression of genes regulating growth, neurotransmission and circadian system.

"Moreover, we found that the effects of the cocaine exposure were dependent on time of exposure, being more robust in the day, and were blocked or attenuated by the principal circadian hormone, melatonin, produced exclusively at night," said lead author Irina Zhdanova, MD, PhD, an associate professor in the department of anatomy and neurobiology at BUSM. "Thus the circadian system might be at the core of the developmental effects of cocaine and their inter-individual variability," she added.

According to Zhdanova, circadian factors, including melatonin, could provide new therapeutic strategies to counteract the developmental effects of prenatal cocaine exposure.

These findings appear in the July 11th issue of the journal PLoS ONE. This study was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Boston University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Boston University. "Cicardian System Suffers And Protects From Prenatal Cocaine Exposure." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 July 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070711105836.htm>.
Boston University. (2007, July 13). Cicardian System Suffers And Protects From Prenatal Cocaine Exposure. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070711105836.htm
Boston University. "Cicardian System Suffers And Protects From Prenatal Cocaine Exposure." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070711105836.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

Newsy (July 25, 2014) An online quiz from a required course at Ohio State is making waves for suggesting atheists are inherently smarter than Christians. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins