Project Title

The Anxiety- and Depression-like Behavioral Profile of Astrocytic FAK Knockout Mice

Authors' Affiliations

Yong Yang , Department of Biomedical Science, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University Dr. Cuihong Jia, Department of Biomedical Science, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University

Location

Culp Ballroom

Start Date

4-7-2022 9:00 AM

End Date

4-7-2022 12:00 PM

Poster Number

2

Faculty Sponsor’s Department

Biomedical Sciences

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Cuihong Jia

Additional Sponsors

Dr. Theo Hagg, Department of Biomedical Science, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University

Classification of First Author

Medical Student

Competition Type

Competitive

Type

Poster Presentation

Project's Category

Biomedical Engineering

Abstract or Artist's Statement

The anxiety- and depression-like behavioral profile of Astrocytic FAK knockout mice

Steve Yang and Dr. Cuihong Jia, Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN.

Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is expressed by astrocytes where it is believed to promote neurotransmitter synthesis and yet depression-like behaviors in mice, especially female mice based on our previous study. We have also discovered that inhibition of focal adhesion kinase (FAK) in astrocytes can upregulate CNTF. However, whether FAK inhibition-induced CNTF affects anxiety- or depression-like behaviors is still unclear. We, therefore, used Cre-lox system to upregulate CNTF expression in mice brains via selective and inducible knockout FAK in astrocytes. We then used behavioral tests, such as open field, elevated T-maze, sucrose swim, object location memory, to measure target mice's anxiety-like and depression-like behaviors. As a result of completing the behavior tests and by comparing to the control group, we learned that knockout of FAK in astrocytes did not affect anxiety – and depression-like behaviors in female mice, nor did it alter learning or memory abilities. Nevertheless, we found that FAK knockout in astrocytes of female mice seemed to increase their locomotor function. Further study will use the same procedures to expand on male mice, compare the results, and investigate the mechanism underlying the locomotor activities. We hope this work can be a useful tool in better understanding anxiety and mood disorders from a molecular level, especially posttraumatic stress disorder, and major depressive disorder so that more specific pharmacologic therapies can be developed to treat these illnesses.

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Apr 7th, 9:00 AM Apr 7th, 12:00 PM

The Anxiety- and Depression-like Behavioral Profile of Astrocytic FAK Knockout Mice

Culp Ballroom

The anxiety- and depression-like behavioral profile of Astrocytic FAK knockout mice

Steve Yang and Dr. Cuihong Jia, Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN.

Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is expressed by astrocytes where it is believed to promote neurotransmitter synthesis and yet depression-like behaviors in mice, especially female mice based on our previous study. We have also discovered that inhibition of focal adhesion kinase (FAK) in astrocytes can upregulate CNTF. However, whether FAK inhibition-induced CNTF affects anxiety- or depression-like behaviors is still unclear. We, therefore, used Cre-lox system to upregulate CNTF expression in mice brains via selective and inducible knockout FAK in astrocytes. We then used behavioral tests, such as open field, elevated T-maze, sucrose swim, object location memory, to measure target mice's anxiety-like and depression-like behaviors. As a result of completing the behavior tests and by comparing to the control group, we learned that knockout of FAK in astrocytes did not affect anxiety – and depression-like behaviors in female mice, nor did it alter learning or memory abilities. Nevertheless, we found that FAK knockout in astrocytes of female mice seemed to increase their locomotor function. Further study will use the same procedures to expand on male mice, compare the results, and investigate the mechanism underlying the locomotor activities. We hope this work can be a useful tool in better understanding anxiety and mood disorders from a molecular level, especially posttraumatic stress disorder, and major depressive disorder so that more specific pharmacologic therapies can be developed to treat these illnesses.