Effects of neonatal rat Borna disease virus (BDV) infection on the postnatal development of the brain monoaminergic systems

Mikhail V. Pletnikov, Steven A. Rubin, Gary J. Schwartz, Kathryn M. Carbone, Timothy H. Moran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Effects of neonatal Borna disease virus infection (BDV) on the postnatal development of brain monoaminergic systems in rats were studied. Tissue content of norepinephrine (NE), dopamine (DA) and its metabolite, 3,4- dihydroxyphenol acetic acid (DOPAC), and serotonin (5-HT) and its metabolite, 5-hydroxyindole-3-acetic acid (5-HIAA) were assayed by means of HPLC-EC in frontal cortex, cerebellum, hippocampus, hypothalamus and striatum of neonatally BDV-infected and sham-inoculated male Lewis rats of 8, 14, 21, 60 and 90 days of age. Both NE and 5-HT concentrations were significantly affected by neonatal BDV infection. The cortical and cerebellar levels of NE and 5-HT were significantly greater in BDV-infected rats than control animals at postnatal days (PND) 60 and 90. Tissue content of NE in hippocampus was unaffected. In hippocampus, neonatally BDV-infected rats had lower 5-HT levels at PND 8 and significantly elevated levels at PND 21 and onwards. Neither striatal levels of 5-HT nor hypothalamic levels of 5-HT and NE were affected by neonatal BDV infection, suggesting that the monoamine systems in the prenatally maturing brain regions are less sensitive to effects of neonatal viral infection. 5-HIAA/5-HT ratio was not altered in BDV-infected rats indicating no changes in the 5-HT turnover in the brain regions damaged by the virus. Neither DA nor DOPAC/DA ratio was affected by neonatal BDV infection in any of the brain regions examined. The present data demonstrate significant and specific alterations in monoaminergic systems in neonatally BDV-infected rats. This pattern of changes is consistent with the previously reported behavioral abnormalities resulting from neonatal BDV infection. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-185
Number of pages7
JournalDevelopmental Brain Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 7 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Borna
  • Development
  • Monoamine
  • Rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Developmental Biology


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