November 30, 2020

Astroglia in lateral habenula is essential for antidepressant efficacy of light

Successful antidepressant (AD) treatments are still difficult to achieve. Recently, bright light stimulation (BLS) was shown effective in non-seasonal depression but its mode of action remains elusive. We demonstrate here, using a new mouse model of depression resistant to ADs including ketamine, that chemogenetic activation of lateral habenula (LHb) astroglia prevented the potentiating effect of BLS on the AD response. Additionally, the beneficial action of BLS was associated with upregulation of a specific part of the prefrontal cortex opioid system. These results show that improved behavioral outcome produced by BLS requires habenular astroglia and endogenous opioids as crucial buffer systems.

 bioRxiv Subject Collection: Neuroscience

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