Acute Stress Suppresses Synaptic Inhibition and Increases Anxiety via Endocannabinoid Release in the Basolateral Amygdala.

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“Stress and glucocorticoids stimulate the rapid mobilization of endocannabinoids in the basolateral amygdala (BLA).

Cannabinoid receptors in the BLA contribute to anxiogenesis and fear-memory formation. We tested for rapid glucocorticoid-induced endocannabinoid regulation of synaptic inhibition in the rat BLA.

Together, these findings suggest that acute stress causes a long-lasting suppression of synaptic inhibition in BLA neurons via a membrane glucocorticoid receptor-induced release of 2-AG at GABA synapses, which contributes to stress-induced anxiogenesis.

We show that acute stress increases anxiety-like behavior via an endocannabinoid-dependent mechanism centered in the BLA.

The stress-induced endocannabinoid modulation of synaptic transmission in the BLA contributes, therefore, to the stress regulation of anxiety, and may play a role in anxiety disorders of the amygdala.”

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