Chemogenetic activation of astrocytes promotes remyelination and restores cognitive deficits in visceral hypersensitive rats

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Mahadi Hasan
  • Faeeqa Usaila
  • Aruna Surendran Ramkrishnan


Original languageEnglish
Article number105840
Journal / PublicationiScience
Issue number1
Online published20 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jan 2023



Using a well-established chronic visceral hypersensitivity (VH) rat model, we characterized the decrease of myelin basic protein, reduced number of mature oligodendrocytes (OLs), and hypomyelination in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC). The results of rat gambling test showed impaired decision-making, and the results of electrophysiological studies showed desynchronization in the ACC to basolateral amygdala (BLA) neural circuitry. Astrocytes release various factors that modulate oligodendrocyte progenitor cell proliferation and myelination. Astrocytic Gq-modulation through expression of hM3Dq facilitated oligodendrocyte progenitor cell proliferation and OL differentiation, and enhanced ACC myelination in VH rats. Activating astrocytic Gq rescued impaired decision-making and desynchronization in ACC-BLA. These data indicate that ACC hypomyelination is an important component of impaired decision-making and network desynchronization in VH. Astrocytic Gq activity plays a significant role in oligodendrocyte myelination and decision-making behavior in VH. Insights from these studies have potential for interventions in myelin-related diseases such as chronic pain-associated cognitive disorders.

Research Area(s)

  • Biological sciences, Cognitive neuroscience, Neuroscience

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