Event Title

Effects of gestational protein restriction on brain reward system

Faculty Advisor

Dr. Erin Rhinehart

Start Date

23-4-2019 12:00 PM

End Date

23-4-2019 1:00 PM

Description

Gestational environment impacts life-long offspring health, and it may influence offspring susceptibility to addiction. Lack of maternal protein intake during pregnancy perturbs physiological development, especially for the brain. Changes in brain development due to a poor maternal diet might increase susceptibility to addiction by affecting central reward systems. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate limiting enzyme to produce dopamine, the primary reward neurotransmitter, is made in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and is sent to the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). We hypothesize that gestational maternal protein restriction will influence offspring reward pathways in the brain. To test this hypothesis, we restricted maternal protein intake during gestation and examined offspring reward pathway TH expression. We expect that gestationally restricted offspring will exhibit reduced TH expression, indicative of a functional reward deficit, requiring offspring to consume greater quantities of rewarding substances to experience any kind of reward, thus increasing the risk of addiction.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 23rd, 12:00 PM Apr 23rd, 1:00 PM

Effects of gestational protein restriction on brain reward system

Gestational environment impacts life-long offspring health, and it may influence offspring susceptibility to addiction. Lack of maternal protein intake during pregnancy perturbs physiological development, especially for the brain. Changes in brain development due to a poor maternal diet might increase susceptibility to addiction by affecting central reward systems. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), the rate limiting enzyme to produce dopamine, the primary reward neurotransmitter, is made in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and is sent to the nucleus accumbens (NAcc). We hypothesize that gestational maternal protein restriction will influence offspring reward pathways in the brain. To test this hypothesis, we restricted maternal protein intake during gestation and examined offspring reward pathway TH expression. We expect that gestationally restricted offspring will exhibit reduced TH expression, indicative of a functional reward deficit, requiring offspring to consume greater quantities of rewarding substances to experience any kind of reward, thus increasing the risk of addiction.