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  • Morello, Francesca; Voikar, Vootele; Parkkinen, Pihla; Panhelainen, Anne; Rosenholm, Marko; Makkonen, Aki; Rantamäki, Tomi; Piepponen, Petteri; Aitta-aho, Teemu; Partanen, Juha (2020)
    The neural circuits regulating motivation and movement include midbrain dopaminergic neurons and associated inhibitory GABAergic and excitatory glutamatergic neurons in the anterior brainstem. Differentiation of specific subtypes of GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons in the mouse embryonic brainstem is controlled by a transcription factorTal1. This study characterizes the behavioral and neurochemical changes caused by the absence ofTal1function. TheTal1(cko)mutant mice are hyperactive, impulsive, hypersensitive to reward, have learning deficits and a habituation defect in a novel environment. Only minor changes in their dopaminergic system were detected. Amphetamine induced striatal dopamine release and amphetamine induced place preference were normal inTal1(cko)mice. Increased dopamine signaling failed to stimulate the locomotor activity of theTal1(cko)mice, but instead alleviated their hyperactivity. Altogether, theTal1(cko)mice recapitulate many features of the attention and hyperactivity disorders, suggesting a role forTal1regulated developmental pathways and neural structures in the control of motivation and movement.
  • Siltari, Aino; Korpela, R.; Vapaatalo, H. (2016)
    Bradykinin exerts its vascular actions via two types of receptors, the non-constitutively expressed bradykinin receptor type 1 (BR1) and the constitutive type 2 receptor (BR2). Bradykinin-induced vasorelaxation is age-dependent, a phenomenon related to the varying amounts of BR1 and BR2 in the vasculature. Isoleucine-proline-proline (Ile-Pro-Pro), a bioactive tripeptide, lowers elevated blood pressure and improves impaired endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation in hypertensive rats. It inhibits angiotensin converting enzyme 1 (ACE1). Other mechanisms of action have also been postulated. The aims of the study were to clarify the underlying mechanisms of the age-dependency of bradykinin-induced vasodilatation such as the roles of the two bradykinin receptors, themas-receptor and synergism with Ile-Pro-Pro. The vascular response studies were conducted using mesenteric artery and aorta rings from normotensive 6 wk. (young) and 22 wk. (old) Wistar rats. Cumulative dosing of acetylcholine, bradykinin and angiotensin(1-7) (Ang(1-7))were tested in phenylephrine-induced vasoconstriction with or without 10 min pre-incubation with antagonists against BR1-, BR2- or mas-receptors,Ang(1-7) or ACE1-inhibitors captopril and Ile-Pro-Pro. The bradykinin-induced vasorelaxation in vitro was age-dependent and it was improved by pre incubation with Ile-Pro-Pro, especially in old rats with endothelial dysfunction. The mas-receptor antagonist, D-Pro7-Ang(1-7) abolished bradykinin-induced relaxation totally. Interestingly, BR1 and BR2 antagonists only slightly reduced bradykinin-induced vasorelaxation, as an evidence for the involvement of other mechanisms in addition to receptor activation. In conclusion, bradykinin-induced vasorelaxation was age -dependent and He-Pro-Pro improved it. Mas receptor antagonist abolished relaxation while bradykinin receptor antagonist only slightly reduced it, suggesting that bradykinin-induced vasorelaxation is regulated also by other mechanisms than the classical BR1/BR2 pathway. (C) 2016 Elsevier Inc: All rights reserved.
  • Sieminski, Mariusz; Szypenbejl, Jacek; Partinen, Eemil (2018)
    The aim of this review was to summarize collected data on the role of orexin and orexin neurons in the control of sleep and blood pressure. Although orexins (hypocretins) have been known for only 20 years, an impressive amount of data is now available regarding their physiological role. Hypothalamic orexin neurons are responsible for the control of food intake and energy expenditure, motivation, circadian rhythm of sleep and wake, memory, cognitive functions, and the cardiovascular system. Multiple studies show that orexinergic stimulation results in increased blood pressure and heart rate and that this effect may be efficiently attenuated by orexinergic antagonism. Increased activity of orexinergic neurons is also observed in animal models of hypertension. Pharmacological intervention in the orexinergic system is now one of the therapeutic possibilities in insomnia. Although the role of orexin in the control of blood pressure is well described, we are still lacking clinical evidence that this is a possibility for a new approach in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases.