TRAPping Trauma Adapted Trauma Memory Encoding and Retrieval in the Dentate Gyrus Lies at the Root of Resiliency to Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

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Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric disorder that can develop after exposure to trauma. Although over 80% of the population will be exposed to a traumatic event in their lifetime, only 7-9% will actually develop PTSD. The neural processes underlying susceptibility to this disorder is not yet known, however, PTSD symptomatology directs towards overgeneralization of the traumatic memory. Considering its role in pattern separation, the DG is considered to be involved in overgeneralization of trauma-related memories. Here, we exposed the TRAP transgenic mouse line to an established PTSD-induction model, known to induce PTSD-like symptoms in part of the mice, whereas others are resilient. In these mice we compared the neuronal activity associated with the encoding and retrieval of the trauma memory in the dentate gyrus of PTSD-susceptible and resilient mice to investigate whether structural changes in neuronal activity during these memory processes are linked to PTSD. Although we did not find any neuronal differences between PTSD-like and resilient mice, we did find distinct encoding and retrieval levels in the suprapyramidal region of the ventral and dorsal hippocampus in resilient mice in comparison to controls. Together, these data suggest that a combination of well-adapted expression levels could result in the display of resilient behavior after trauma.
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