The nonapeptide oxytocin is considered beneficial to mental health due to its anxiolytic, prosocial and antistress effects, but evidence for anxiogenic actions of oxytocin in humans has recently emerged. Using region-specific manipulations of the mouse oxytocin receptor (Oxtr) gene (Oxtr), we identified the lateral septum as the brain region mediating fear-enhancing effects of Oxtr. These effects emerge after social defeat and require Oxtr specifically coupled to the extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase pathway.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Neuroscience