Early or Late Gestational Exposure to Maternal Immune Activation Alters Neurodevelopmental Trajectories in Mice: An Integrated Neuroimaging, Behavioral, and Transcriptional Study.

TitleEarly or Late Gestational Exposure to Maternal Immune Activation Alters Neurodevelopmental Trajectories in Mice: An Integrated Neuroimaging, Behavioral, and Transcriptional Study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsGuma E, Bordignon Pdo Couto, Devenyi GA, Gallino D, Anastassiadis C, Cvetkovska V, Barry AD, Snook E, Germann J, Greenwood CMT, Mišić B, Bagot RC, Chakravarty MM
JournalBiol Psychiatry
Volume90
Issue5
Pagination328-341
Date Published2021 09 01
ISSN1873-2402
KeywordsAnimals, Behavior, Animal, Disease Models, Animal, Female, Mice, Neuroimaging, Poly I-C, Pregnancy, Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects
Abstract

BACKGROUND: Exposure to maternal immune activation (MIA) in utero is a risk factor for neurodevelopmental disorders later in life. The impact of the gestational timing of MIA exposure on downstream development remains unclear.METHODS: We characterized neurodevelopmental trajectories of mice exposed to the viral mimetic poly I:C (polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid) either on gestational day 9 (early) or on day 17 (late) using longitudinal structural magnetic resonance imaging from weaning to adulthood. Using multivariate methods, we related neuroimaging and behavioral variables for the time of greatest alteration (adolescence/early adulthood) and identified regions for further investigation using RNA sequencing.RESULTS: Early MIA exposure was associated with accelerated brain volume increases in adolescence/early adulthood that normalized in later adulthood in the striatum, hippocampus, and cingulate cortex. Similarly, alterations in anxiety-like, stereotypic, and sensorimotor gating behaviors observed in adolescence normalized in adulthood. MIA exposure in late gestation had less impact on anatomical and behavioral profiles. Multivariate maps associated anxiety-like, social, and sensorimotor gating deficits with volume of the dorsal and ventral hippocampus and anterior cingulate cortex, among others. The most transcriptional changes were observed in the dorsal hippocampus, with genes enriched for fibroblast growth factor regulation, autistic behaviors, inflammatory pathways, and microRNA regulation.CONCLUSIONS: Leveraging an integrated hypothesis- and data-driven approach linking brain-behavior alterations to the transcriptome, we found that MIA timing differentially affects offspring development. Exposure in late gestation leads to subthreshold deficits, whereas exposure in early gestation perturbs brain development mechanisms implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders.

DOI10.1016/j.biopsych.2021.03.017
Alternate JournalBiol Psychiatry
PubMed ID34053674
Grant List / / CIHR / Canada