The acute antidepressant effects of ketamine provide hope for the development of a fast acting approach to treat depression but the consequences of chronic treatment with ketamine are still unclear. One theory regarding the acute effect is that ketamine acts through activation of mTOR but chronic activation of mTOR may lead to reduced autophagy and reduced autophagy could have negative consequences on neuronal plasticity and survival and on affect. To study the interaction between chronic ketamine administration, autophagy and depression the present study tested the effects of 3 weeks daily administration of 5 or 10 mg/kg ketamine in both female and male ICR mice on behavior in the open field and the forced swim test and on frontal cortex levels of beclin-1 and p62, two proteins that serve as markers of autophagy. The results show that acute administration of ketamine results in an antidepressant-like effect in the FST, chronic ketamine had no effects in the behavioral tests. There was no difference in the acute or chronic groups between female and male mice. Additionally, chronic ketamine did not alter frontal cortex levels of autophagy markers. The present study suggests that in ICR mice, chronic ketamine does not have the same clear effects that are seen after acute treatment. The lack of difference between females and males and the lack of effects on autophagy after chronic treatment is discussed.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The study was supported by a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation to Haim Einat and Grant W Anderson (grant # 2011313 ).
© 2016 Elsevier B.V.
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- Affective disorders
- Animal model