[Chronic Activation of the Dopaminergic Neuronal Pathway Improves Behavioral Abnormalities in the Prenatal Valproic Acid Exposure Mouse Model of Autism Spectrum Disorder].
Yakugaku Zasshi. 2019;139(11):1391-1396
Authors: Hara Y
Over the last decade there has been an increase in the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD); however, its pathogenic mechanisms remain unclear. To date, no effective drug has been developed to treat the core symptoms of ASD, especially social interaction deficits. Previous studies have mainly focused on the glutamatergic, GABAergic, and serotonergic signaling pathways; however, a growing number of studies have reported abnormalities in the dopaminergic pathway, such as mutations and functional alterations of dopamine-related molecules, in ASD patients. Furthermore, atypical antipsychotic drugs risperidone and aripiprazole are prescribed for the treatment of non-core symptoms, such as irritability, in patients with ASD. These observations suggest that the dopaminergic pathway is involved in the pathogenesis of ASD. Previously, we have established a mouse model of ASD based on clinical research, which shows that exposure to valproic acid, an antiepileptic drug, during pregnancy causes an increase in the risk of developing ASD in children. This review summarizes our recent studies, which have assessed alterations in the prefrontal dopaminergic pathway. In addition, we discuss the effects of treatment with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder drugs and atypical antipsychotic drugs, which activate the prefrontal dopaminergic pathway, on ASD-like behavioral abnormalities in the valproic acid exposure mouse model of ASD.
PMID: 31685735 [PubMed – in process]