Hyperactivity and lack of social discrimination in the adolescent Fmr1 knockout mouse

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  • Emilie M Sørensen, Denmark
  • Freja Bertelsen
  • ,
  • Pia Weikop
  • ,
  • Maria M Skovborg, Denmark
  • Tue Banke
  • Kim R Drasbek
  • Jørgen Scheel-Krüger

The aims of this study were to investigate behaviour relevant to human autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and the fragile X syndrome in adolescent Fmr1 knockout (KO) mice and to evaluate the tissue levels of striatal monoamines. Fmr1 KO mice were evaluated in the open field, marble burying and three-chamber test for the presence of hyperactivity, anxiety, repetitive behaviour, sociability and observation of social novelty compared with wild-type (WT) mice. The Fmr1 KO mice expressed anxiety and hyperactivity in the open field compared with WT mice. This increased level of hyperactivity was confirmed in the three-chamber test. Fmr1 KO mice spent more time with stranger mice compared with the WT. However, after a correction for hyperactivity, their apparent increase in sociability became identical to that of the WT. Furthermore, the Fmr1 KO mice could not differentiate between a familiar or a novel mouse. Monoamines were measured by HPLC: Fmr1 KO mice showed an increase in the striatal dopamine level. We conclude that the fragile X syndrome model seems to be useful for understanding certain aspects of ASD and may have translational interest for studies of social behaviour when hyperactivity coexists in ASD patients.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBehavioural Pharmacology
Issue8 Spec No
Pages (from-to)733-40
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015

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