Critical role of neuropeptides B/W receptor 1 signaling in social behavior and fear memory

Ruby Nagata-Kuroiwa, Naoki Furutani, Junko Hara, Mari Hondo, Makoto Ishii, Tomomi Abe, Michihiro Mieda, Natsuko Tsujino, Toshiyuki Motoike, Yuchio Yanagawa, Tomoyuki Kuwaki, Miyuki Yamamoto, Masashi Yanagisawa, Takeshi Sakurai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Neuropeptide B/W receptor 1 (NPBWR1) is a G-protein coupled receptor, which was initially reported as an orphan receptor, and whose ligands were identified by this and other groups in 2002 and 2003. To examine the physiological roles of NPBWR1, we examined phenotype of Npbwr1-/- mice. When presented with an intruder mouse, Npbwr1-/- mice showed impulsive contact with the strange mice, produced more intense approaches toward them, and had longer contact and chasing time along with greater and sustained elevation of heart rate and blood pressure compared to wild type mice. Npbwr1-/- mice also showed increased autonomic and neuroendocrine responses to physical stress, suggesting that impairment of NPBWR1 leads to stress vulnerability. We also observed that these mice show abnormality in the contextual fear conditioning test. These data suggest that NPBWR1 plays a critical role in limbic system function and stress responses. Histological and electrophysiological studies showed that NPBWR1 acts as an inhibitory regulator on a subpopulation of GABAergic neurons in the lateral division of the CeA and terminates stress responses. These findings suggest important roles of NPBWR1 in regulating amygdala function during physical and social stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere16972
JournalPloS one
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General


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