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Relationship between meta-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) induced grooming and compulsive checking and spontaneous alternation behaviors in rats

Grant number: 17/02255-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2017
Effective date (End): April 30, 2018
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Psychology - Physiological Psychology
Principal researcher:Amanda Ribeiro de Oliveira
Grantee:Leticia Mitsuko Taguchi
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by the presence of obsessions and/or compulsions that cause great suffering to those who feel the need to perform ritualistic actions that are recurrent and persistent in their thinking. With its recent withdrawal from Anxiety Disorders, the OCD relationship with anxiety has been more intensely investigated, since the space to discuss the real importance of anxiety in OCD has been amplified. Previous research has shown that treatments based on habituation and reduction of anxiety have presented a slight improvement in obsessive-compulsive behaviors. Also, about 60% of patients showed improvement in symptoms when treated with serotonergic agonists, which may indicate that the serotonergic system is related with the expression of these symptoms. Studies using the serotoninergic agonist meta-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) in rats showed increased purposeless chewing and grooming, both behaviors that that may be associated with OCD. Some natural behaviors that rats perform, such as the natural checking of the environment and the sequential and alternating exploration, can be affected by the action of different mCPP dosages. The present study intends to contribute in the identification of promising animal models for OCD, observing the action of mCPP in the induction of grooming and exploring its relationship with compulsive checking and spontaneous alternation behaviors, that have already been used in the studies of OCD. For this, male Wistar rats divided in four groups - saline, mCPP 0.1 mg/kg, mCPP 1.0 mg/kg and mCPP 3.0 mg/kg - will be used.

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