The richness of social stimuli shapes developmental trajectories: Are laboratory mouse pups impoverished?

Igor Branchi, Ivana D'Andrea, Sara Santarelli, Luca Tommaso Bonsignore, Enrico Alleva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The early environment is crucial for brain and behavior development. In particular, social experiences involving the mother and the peers are critical in shaping the adult individual. Though animal models of psychiatric disorders have widely investigated the relevance of the mother-offspring interaction, the peer interaction has so far been rarely studied. The communal nest (CN) is an innovative experimental strategy that favors a more comprehensive investigation of the long-term effects of both components. CN is a rearing condition employed by up to 90% of mouse females in naturalistic settings and consists of a single nest where two or more mothers keep their pups together and share care-giving. In a CN, the developing pup is exposed to high levels of both maternal care and interaction with peers. At adulthood, these mice display relevant changes in bran function and behavior, including high levels of neural plasticity markers, such as BDNF, and elaborate adult social competences. Overall, on the one hand, CN is an experimental approach complementary to the ones currently used that allows to investigate how the early environment determines developmental trajectories. On the other, it may represent a strategy to improve the study of animal models of psychiatric disorders characterized by social dysfunction, such as major depression, autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Indeed, the more elaborate social competences shown by these mice at adulthood may allow to better characterize deficits in the social domain induced by genetic and/or environmental manipulations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1452-1460
Number of pages9
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Volume35
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2011

Fingerprint

Mothers
Psychiatry
Animal Models
Neuronal Plasticity
Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity
Autistic Disorder
Depression
Brain
Social Skills

Keywords

  • Depression
  • Early experiences
  • Enriched environment
  • Mouse models
  • Peer interaction
  • Social competences

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology

Cite this

The richness of social stimuli shapes developmental trajectories : Are laboratory mouse pups impoverished? / Branchi, Igor; D'Andrea, Ivana; Santarelli, Sara; Bonsignore, Luca Tommaso; Alleva, Enrico.

In: Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry, Vol. 35, No. 6, 01.08.2011, p. 1452-1460.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Branchi, Igor ; D'Andrea, Ivana ; Santarelli, Sara ; Bonsignore, Luca Tommaso ; Alleva, Enrico. / The richness of social stimuli shapes developmental trajectories : Are laboratory mouse pups impoverished?. In: Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry. 2011 ; Vol. 35, No. 6. pp. 1452-1460.
@article{d7b097ca857c40b5ad4b6b2c9730f52a,
title = "The richness of social stimuli shapes developmental trajectories: Are laboratory mouse pups impoverished?",
abstract = "The early environment is crucial for brain and behavior development. In particular, social experiences involving the mother and the peers are critical in shaping the adult individual. Though animal models of psychiatric disorders have widely investigated the relevance of the mother-offspring interaction, the peer interaction has so far been rarely studied. The communal nest (CN) is an innovative experimental strategy that favors a more comprehensive investigation of the long-term effects of both components. CN is a rearing condition employed by up to 90{\%} of mouse females in naturalistic settings and consists of a single nest where two or more mothers keep their pups together and share care-giving. In a CN, the developing pup is exposed to high levels of both maternal care and interaction with peers. At adulthood, these mice display relevant changes in bran function and behavior, including high levels of neural plasticity markers, such as BDNF, and elaborate adult social competences. Overall, on the one hand, CN is an experimental approach complementary to the ones currently used that allows to investigate how the early environment determines developmental trajectories. On the other, it may represent a strategy to improve the study of animal models of psychiatric disorders characterized by social dysfunction, such as major depression, autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Indeed, the more elaborate social competences shown by these mice at adulthood may allow to better characterize deficits in the social domain induced by genetic and/or environmental manipulations.",
keywords = "Depression, Early experiences, Enriched environment, Mouse models, Peer interaction, Social competences",
author = "Igor Branchi and Ivana D'Andrea and Sara Santarelli and Bonsignore, {Luca Tommaso} and Enrico Alleva",
year = "2011",
month = "8",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.pnpbp.2011.01.002",
language = "English",
volume = "35",
pages = "1452--1460",
journal = "Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry",
issn = "0278-5846",
publisher = "Elsevier Inc.",
number = "6",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The richness of social stimuli shapes developmental trajectories

T2 - Are laboratory mouse pups impoverished?

AU - Branchi, Igor

AU - D'Andrea, Ivana

AU - Santarelli, Sara

AU - Bonsignore, Luca Tommaso

AU - Alleva, Enrico

PY - 2011/8/1

Y1 - 2011/8/1

N2 - The early environment is crucial for brain and behavior development. In particular, social experiences involving the mother and the peers are critical in shaping the adult individual. Though animal models of psychiatric disorders have widely investigated the relevance of the mother-offspring interaction, the peer interaction has so far been rarely studied. The communal nest (CN) is an innovative experimental strategy that favors a more comprehensive investigation of the long-term effects of both components. CN is a rearing condition employed by up to 90% of mouse females in naturalistic settings and consists of a single nest where two or more mothers keep their pups together and share care-giving. In a CN, the developing pup is exposed to high levels of both maternal care and interaction with peers. At adulthood, these mice display relevant changes in bran function and behavior, including high levels of neural plasticity markers, such as BDNF, and elaborate adult social competences. Overall, on the one hand, CN is an experimental approach complementary to the ones currently used that allows to investigate how the early environment determines developmental trajectories. On the other, it may represent a strategy to improve the study of animal models of psychiatric disorders characterized by social dysfunction, such as major depression, autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Indeed, the more elaborate social competences shown by these mice at adulthood may allow to better characterize deficits in the social domain induced by genetic and/or environmental manipulations.

AB - The early environment is crucial for brain and behavior development. In particular, social experiences involving the mother and the peers are critical in shaping the adult individual. Though animal models of psychiatric disorders have widely investigated the relevance of the mother-offspring interaction, the peer interaction has so far been rarely studied. The communal nest (CN) is an innovative experimental strategy that favors a more comprehensive investigation of the long-term effects of both components. CN is a rearing condition employed by up to 90% of mouse females in naturalistic settings and consists of a single nest where two or more mothers keep their pups together and share care-giving. In a CN, the developing pup is exposed to high levels of both maternal care and interaction with peers. At adulthood, these mice display relevant changes in bran function and behavior, including high levels of neural plasticity markers, such as BDNF, and elaborate adult social competences. Overall, on the one hand, CN is an experimental approach complementary to the ones currently used that allows to investigate how the early environment determines developmental trajectories. On the other, it may represent a strategy to improve the study of animal models of psychiatric disorders characterized by social dysfunction, such as major depression, autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Indeed, the more elaborate social competences shown by these mice at adulthood may allow to better characterize deficits in the social domain induced by genetic and/or environmental manipulations.

KW - Depression

KW - Early experiences

KW - Enriched environment

KW - Mouse models

KW - Peer interaction

KW - Social competences

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=79960463509&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=79960463509&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2011.01.002

DO - 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2011.01.002

M3 - Article

C2 - 21237232

AN - SCOPUS:79960463509

VL - 35

SP - 1452

EP - 1460

JO - Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry

JF - Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry

SN - 0278-5846

IS - 6

ER -