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Fast antidepressant action of ketamine in mouse models requires normal VGLUT1 levels from prefrontal cortex neurons

ISSN: 0278-5846
Volumen: 121
Páginas: 110640
Fecha de publicación: 2023
The NMDA antagonist ketamine demonstrated a fast antidepressant activity in treatment-resistant depression. Pre-clinical studies suggest that de novo synthesis of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the PFC might be involved in the rapid antidepressant action of ketamine. Applying a genetic model of impaired glutamate release, this study aims to further identify the molecular mechanisms that could modulate antide-pressant action and resistance to treatment.To that end, mice knocked-down for the vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1+/-) were used. We analyzed anhedonia and helpless behavior as well as the expression of the proteins linked to glutamate trans-mission in the PFC of mice treated with ketamine or the reference antidepressant reboxetine. Moreover, we analyzed the acute effects of ketamine in VGLUT1+/-mice pretreated with chronic reboxetine or those that received a PFC rescue expression of VGLUT1. Chronic reboxetine rescued the depressive-like phenotype of the VGLUT1+/-mice. In addition, it enhanced the expression of the proteins linked to the AMPA signaling pathway as well as the immature form of BDNF (pro-BDNF). Unlike WT mice, ketamine had no effect on anhedonia or pro-BDNF expression in VGLUT1+/-mice; it also failed to decrease phosphorylated eukaryote elongation factor 2 (p-eEF2). Nevertheless, we found that reboxetine administered as pretreatment or PFC overexpression of VGLUT1 did rescue the antidepressant-like activity of acute ketamine in the mice. Our results strongly suggest that not only do PFC VGLUT1 levels modulate the rapid-antidepressant action of ketamine, but also highlight a possible mechanism for antidepressant resistance in some patients.