Neurofunctional and neurochemical endophenotypes in mouse models of autism spectrum disorder investigated by fMRI and MRS
Marija M. Petrinovic 1,2 , Michael Saxe 1 , Barbara Biemans 1 , Peter Scheiffele 2 , Markus von Kienlin 1 , and Basil Knnecke 1
F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, Pharma Research &
Early Development, DTA Neuroscience, Basel, Basel,
University of Basel, Basel, Basel, Switzerland
Alterations in neural function and neurochemistry have
been proposed as mechanisms underlying behavioural
deficits associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
We have leveraged fMRI/MRS in five mouse models of ASD
to bridge the gap between genetic/molecular findings and
behavioural phenotypes. fMRI revealed prominent
neurofunctional alterations in brain regions implicated
in socio-emotional, cognitive and sensorimotor
processing. fMRI fingerprints were heterogeneous across
the models, yet, they reflect the complexity of ASD
symptoms found in patients. 1H-MRS in these models
showed consistent changes in cerebral glutamate levels
indicative of a dysbalance in excitatory/inhibitory
neurotransmission which has been purported as a
substrate for ASD.
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