ZL006, a small molecule inhibitor of PSD-95/nNOS interaction, does not induce antidepressant-like effects in two genetically predisposed rat models of depression and control animals

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N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDA-R) antagonists and nitric oxide inhibitors have shown promising efficacy in depression but commonly induce adverse events. To circumvent these, a more indirect disruption of the nitric oxide synthase/postsynaptic density protein 95 kDa complex at the NMDA-R has been proposed. This disruption can be achieved using small molecule inhibitors such as ZL006, which has attracted attention as ischemic stroke therapy in rodents and has been proposed as a potential novel treatment for depression. Based on this, our aim was to translate these findings to animal models of depression to elucidate antidepressant-like properties in more detail. In the present study, we administered ZL006 to two established animal models of depression and control rodents. Following treatment, we measured locomotion in the Open Field and depressive-like behavior in the Forced Swim Test and Tail Suspension Test. Our experimental designs included the use of different species (rats, mice), strains (Flinders Sensitive Line rats, Flinders Resistant Line rats, Wistar Kyoto rats, Wistar Hanover rats, Sprague Dawley rats, B6NTac mice), routes of administration (intraperitoneal, intracerebroventricular), times of administration (single injection, repeated injections), treatment regimens (acute, sustained), and doses (5, 10, 15, 50 mg/kg). ZL006 did not affect behavior in any of the described settings. On a molecular level, ZL006 significantly reduced total nitrate/nitrite concentrations in the cerebellum, supporting that it is capable of reducing nitric oxide metabolites in the brain. Future studies using different experimental parameters are needed to further investigate the behavioral profile of ZL006.

Original languageEnglish
JournalP L o S One
Pages (from-to)1-17
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2017

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