News of the WeekNeuroscience

Bullied Mice Implicate Brain's Reward Pathway in Mood Disorders

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Science  10 Feb 2006:
Vol. 311, Issue 5762, pp. 759
DOI: 10.1126/science.311.5762.759

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On page 864, scientists show that when a bullied mouse becomes fearful and withdrawn, the brain's reward circuits--the areas usually associated with addiction--play a big role in these reactions. Furthermore, they find that such negative responses are enabled by brain-derived neurotrophic factor, a chemical that elsewhere in the brain is associated with antidepressant actions. (Read more.)