OPEN Scientific reports | 13 Feb 2018
S Delmas, R Porteous, DH Bergin and AE Herbison
The roles of kisspeptin signaling outside the hypothalamus in the brain are unknown. We examined here the impact of Kiss1r-deletion on hippocampus-related behaviors of anxiety and spatial learning in adult male mice using two mouse models. In the first, global Kiss1r-null and control mice were gonadectomized (GDX KISS1R-KO). In the second, KISS1R signalling was rescued selectively in gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons to generate Kiss1r-null mice with normal testosterone levels (intact KISS1R-KO). Intact KISS1R-KO rescue mice were found to spend twice as much time in the open arms of the elevated plus maze (EPM) compared to controls (P < 0.01). GDX KISS1R-KO mice showed a similar but less pronounced trend. No differences were detected between intact KISS1R-KO mice and controls in the open field test (OFT), although a marked reduction in time spent in the centre quadrant was observed for all GDX mice (P < 0.001). No effects of KISS1R deletion or gonadectomy were detected in the Morris water maze. These observations demonstrate that KISS1R signalling impacts upon anxiogenic neural circuits operative in the EPM, while gonadal steroids appear important for anxiety behaviour observed in the OFT. The potential anxiogenic role of kisspeptin may need to be considered in the development of kisspeptin analogs for the clinic.
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