Ingentium News Magazine

Scientists use genetic engineering to explore mechanisms involved in psychiatric disorders

Publicado em 13 maio 2021

The neurons and interneurons in the human brain communicate via electrical and chemical signals to activate or inhibit nearby neurons as well as circuits in distant brain regions. The role of interneurons In the same issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, the group published another article on synchronous activity of cortical inhibitory interneurons expressing parvalbumin. “The results show that manipulating BDNF/trkB in adults can alter not only brain activity but also complex behaviors that depend on the prefrontal cortex,” Aguiar said. “We’re exploring the normal brain in order to achieve a deeper understanding of psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia,” he said. Studies of tissue from this brain region in patients with schizophrenia have detected alterations in two proteins: BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) and trkB (tyrosine receptor kinase B). “We work with basic science to understand the mechanisms of the brain, and our findings can help all those concerned understand psychiatric disorders a little better,” he said. When the modified trkB binds to BDNF, the intracellular signaling cascade is blocked, reproducing characteristics observed in brain tissue from schizophrenia patients.