Depression is a common and debilitating mood disorder that impacts women more often than men. The mechanisms that result in depressive behaviors are not fully understood; however, the hippocampus has been noted as a key structure in the pathophysiology of depression. In addition to neural implications of depression, the cardiovascular system is impacted. Although not as commonly considered, the cerebrovasculature is critical to brain function, impacted by environmental stimuli, and is capable of altering neural function and thereby behavior. In the current study, we assessed the relationship between depressive behavior and a marker of vascularization of the hippocampus in adult female cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis). Similar to previously noted impacts on neuropil and glia, the depressed phenotype predicts a reduction in a marker of vascular length in the anterior hippocampus. These data reinforce the growing recognition of the effects of depression on vasculature and support further consideration of vascular endpoints in studies aimed at the elucidation of the mechanisms underlying depression.
Keywords: Cerebrovasculature; Depression; Female; Hippocampus; Macaca fascicularis; Unbiased stereology; Vascular.
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