Maternal pinealectomy increases depressive-like responses in Siberian hamster offspring

Behav Brain Res. 2008 Jun 3;189(2):387-91. doi: 10.1016/j.bbr.2008.01.016. Epub 2008 Feb 5.


This study investigated the effect of maternal pinealectomy and postnatal pinealectomy on affective responses. Siberian hamsters were born to either pinealectomized or sham-operated dams and then underwent pinealectomy or a sham operation. Maternal pinealectomy increased depressive-like responses of offspring in the forced swim test. Maternal pinealectomy increased rearing behaviour and postnatal pinealectomy increased locomotor behaviour in the open field test. These results suggest that prenatal melatonin organizes adult affective responses.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anxiety / physiopathology*
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology
  • Cricetinae
  • Depression / physiopathology*
  • Exploratory Behavior / physiology
  • Female
  • Maternal Behavior / physiology*
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Photoperiod
  • Pineal Gland / physiology*
  • Pineal Gland / surgery
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects*