2020 Volume 43 Issue 8 Pages 1226-1234
Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (AD/HD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. In patients with AD/HD, a decrease in the total and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep times has been observed. We have previously reported that mice with REM sleep deprivation-induced stress (REMSD) may show the hyperactivity- and inattention-like symptoms of AD/HD. However, in this model, impulsivity has not yet been investigated. Impulsivity and anxiety-related behaviors are evaluated by the elevated plus maze test (EPM). In this study, we investigated whether REMSD causes changes in the EPM and expression of alpha2A-adrenoceptors in the hippocampus and frontal cortex in a mouse model. Mice were deprived of REM sleep intermittently using the small-platform method (20 h/d) for 3 d. The time spent in the open arm and the expression levels of alpha2A-adrenoceptor in the hippocampus were significantly increased and decreased, respectively, by the REMSD. The time spent in the open arm was significantly limited by oxymetazoline (an alpha2A-adrenoceptor agonist), methylphenidate, and atomoxetine, which are clinically used to treat AD/HD. Moreover, the positive effects of oxymetazoline were attenuated by yohimbine and BRL44408, which are selective alpha2- and alpha2A-adrenoceptor antagonists, respectively. These results suggest that the increase in the time spent in the open arm induced by REMSD may serve as a model of impulsivity in AD/HD. Furthermore, the REMSD eliciting impulsivity-like behavior and the low-levels of anxiety may be linked to alpha2A-adrenoceptor signaling, as indicated by a decrease in alpha2A-adrenoceptor signaling, particularly in the mouse hippocampus.